BEIS has published a long-awaited Consultation on the Package Travel Regulations (PTR) that will transpose the requirements of the 2015 European Package Travel Directive into UK law. This new Directive aims to provide clearer and more comprehensive protection for holidaymakers by updating the scope of protection to cover modern industry practices such as dynamic packaging and “click-through” arrangements where the customer, on completion of one part element (eg., a flight) then clicks through to another site to purchase another element (eg accommodation).
Specifically, BEIS are inviting comments on the following issues:
- Modes of insolvency protection for packages that do not include a flight. Would the options currently in place still be viable under the new regime?
- The new concept of Linked Travel Arrangements (LTAs).
- The creation of a UK central contact point that will respond to other EU Member States regarding UK established organisers’ insolvency regimes.
- Minimum harmonisation provisions. These are provisions that the UK has a choice on whether to implement.
Whilst we all support the protection of the consumer and greater clarity around the provision of that protection, we have always had an issue with the detrimental impact the EU PTRs have on Wales based businesses wanting to work together to provide “added-value products” to customers which do not include travel. For example paying to stay in a self-catering cottage and gaining a day's free entry to a local health club to use their private facilities such as a pool or gym.
The consultation document which can be accessed here states: “The UK Government recognises that there is a need to introduce stronger consumer protection to address this gap (new technologies and booking methods) and it is important that we implement changes irrespective of our exit from the European Union.
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