At Simpson Millar LLP, we may be able to assist you if your holiday complaint concerns an accident or an illness you suffered whilst abroad.
If your holiday complaint does not involve a personal injury or illness abroad then we have put together this page full of useful information, which we hope you will find helpful and steer you in the right direction.
Examples of holiday complaints:
- Flight Delays. See our DIY Flight Delay Complaint Guide
- Flight cancellations. See our DIY Flight Cancellation Complaint Guide
- Lost baggage and luggage problems. See our DIY Lost Baggage Complaint Guide
- Disabled and Reduced Mobility Passenger Travel complaints. See our DIY Complaint Guide
- Refused entry
- Accommodation issues – such as not as described; moved to another hotel, failure to mention building works etc. See more below.
- Holiday Insurance issues – such as rejected insurance claims. See more below.
Much will depend on whether you booked a package holiday regulated by the Package Travel Regulations 1992.
The Regulations provide powerful consumer protection for people who book package holidays, which are defined as a holiday that includes transport and accommodation and was sold or offered for sale at one inclusive price. The Regulations make your holiday provider responsible for every aspect of your holiday and therefore the standard of the accommodation and transport.
Accommodation & Transport Complaints
To make a holiday complaint, you should follow your holiday provider’s complaints procedure, (ie First Choice, Thomson, Thomas Cook, Olympic etc) which you can find in the booking terms and conditions issued by the company or on their website.
We have put together a Holiday Complaint Letter Template for you to edit and deal with your holiday provider directly. Click the icon to download.
If you remain unhappy with the outcome of your holiday complaint then you can complain to any of the trade organisations the holiday company belongs to. These organisations operate their own dispute resolution services and more information can be found by visiting their websites:
Alternatively, you can make a claim yourself through the small claims court.
Holidays not booked as a package
If your holiday was not purchased as a package you may find it difficult to seek redress. Holidays where separate invoices are issued for each of the services generally offer little consumer protection. In circumstances where the Package Travel Regulations 1992 do not apply, the only recourse is often to pursue the actual supplier of the service directly, which may mean having to complain directly to a foreign hotel and rely on their sympathy and goodwill.
In most cases where the Regulations do not apply you will discover that your holiday company is really only acting as an agent for the different suppliers of services, who will usually be named on your holiday contract as the principal suppliers of the services. You may be able to pursue your holiday company directly through the small claims court if the services you purchased were misrepresented.
You should follow your airline’s complaints procedure, which is found within your contract for carriage and which can be found on the airline’s website.
If you remain unhappy with the outcome of your complaint then more information can be found on the Civil Aviation Authority’s website about the CAA consumer dispute resolution service. The CAA provides useful advice to consumers about passenger legal rights in the event that a flight is delayed or cancelled or there is a complaint concerning luggage or visa entry requirements. Alternatively, you might decide to pursue your complaint through the small claims court.
You should follow your insurer’s complaints procedure, which you will find within your insurance policy document or on your insurer’s website.
If you remain unhappy with the outcome of your complaint then more information can be found by visiting the Financial Services Ombudsman’s website. The Financial Service Ombudsman operates a dispute resolution service for consumers and their decision is binding. You insurer is legally obligated to provide you with details of how to complain to the Financial Services Ombudsman’s within your insurance policy document.
Small Claims Court
The small claims court is intended to keep lawyers out of the court and to make the court process simple for people with genuine but relatively modest claims to pursue. You can make a small claim in your local county court if the amount you are seeking is less than £10,000, or if the claim involves a personal injury then the injury element is worth less than £1,000.
For Further Information about Small Claims Courts, see our useful resources
Get in touch for a chat about how we can help you by filling in our quick, no obligationand we will call you back or you can call us directly on 0808 145 1353.