To Package or not to Package?

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1 Protecting the Travel Consumer To Package or not to Package? Consumer Comment the proposed Package Travel Directive Response to the UK BIS Consultation: 28 November 2013 In Support of Quality Holiday Travel

2 1 ITEM: PAGE NUMBER ACKNOWLEDGEMENT 2 INTRODUCTION TO HOLIDAYTRAVELWATCH 3 to 4 THE HOLIDAYMAKERS EXPERIENCE THE 2010 HOLIDAY SEASON! 5 to 348 Withheld Deposits 9 to 12 Significant Change 13 to 74 Holiday Price Change 75 to 82 Flight price Change 82 to 86 Surcharges 87 to 88 DIY/Package 88 to 103 Misrepresentation 103 to 117 Travel Company Claims 118 to 162 Force Majeure 162 to 166 Transfers 166 to 168 Travel Insurance 169 to 176 Hygiene 176 to 185 Booking Problems 186 to 218 Disability 218 to 227 Risk Destinations 227 to 229 Quality Complaints 229 to 244 Travel Company Collapses 244 to 262 Name Changes 262 to 269 Accidents 269 to 276 Sickness 276 to 326 Safety 326 to 331 Visa/Passport 332 to 336 Medical Treatment 336 to 337 Crime on Holiday 337 to 346 Timeshare/Holiday Club 346 to 348 THE HOLIDAYTRAVELWATCH RESPONSE TO THE UK DEPARTMENT FOR BUSINESS, INNOVATION & SKILLS CONSULTATION 349 to 373 CONCLUSION 374 HolidayTravelWatch 2013 Publication of part or the whole of this report only with the express permission of HolidayTravelWatch. Permission is however extended to the EU Commission, EU Parliament, UK Parliament and UK Government Departments.

3 2 Acknowledgment It is nearly 9 years since the death of our Founder, Brenda Wall. Her outstanding determination and courage, led to a new dialogue between the Consumer and The Travel Industry. Such dialogue has created a greater awareness of corporate behaviour and the need for Safety & Consumer Protections that benefit both the Consumer and The Travel Industry. At the time of her death, the issue of Safety and the challenges to the Package Travel Directive were very much live issues and she was determined that the work of HolidayTravelWatch would rise to meet the issues at stake. This report is dedicated to the memory of Brenda Wall and the many thousands of UK Travel Consumers who have found themselves at the mercy of Travel Companies and the failure of State Authorities to act against them!

4 3 Introduction to HolidayTravelWatch HolidayTravelWatch (HTW) has for many years campaigned for the maintenance and enhancement of the Package Travel Directive (PTD) and its UK Regulation. We acknowledge the respect that we have been shown by members of the EU Commission, some UK Government Departments and some members of the Travel Industry, when we have made the case for the Consumer. Where many used to advocate for the repeal of the PTD, this organisation defended the hard-won rights contained within its provisions. We will continue to watch the development of the new PTD and in particular the opportunities of cross-border sales within the EU! HTW is British based consumers organisation founded in Through 18 years of operation, it has provided information, advice and assistance to over 250,000 holidaymakers, through its dedicated helpline and website. This should however be put into context with the 65,000,000 individual trips taken by British Citizens in It suggests that HTW only receives a small proportion of all complaints, however, these holiday complaints tend to reflect the more serious element of contractual, illness and injury difficulties faced by the consumer. The Organisation is open about its activities with a full declaration on its website. In furtherance of that openness, HolidayTravelWatch is entered onto the EU Transparency Register ID Number The Author is a practising Solicitor and is Regulated not only by the Solicitors Regulatory Authority but also by the Claims Management Regulator in England & Wales. In his Political dealings, he also voluntarily subscribes to the Nolan principles for Standards in Public Life. The Organisation provides a free service to Consumers and currently equips some 90% of all Travel Consumers with information to help them find a resolution to their travel complaints. Those who cannot benefit from self-help routes are given the opportunity to progress toward 1 Lord Treisman FCO Reception March https://webgate.ec.europa.eu/transparency/regrin/consultation/displaylobbyist.do?id=

5 4 litigation via Travel Law Specialists. It is estimated that since 1995, when our Service was not as comprehensive as it is today, more than 95,000 holidaymakers have received Legal Assistance and have achieved in excess of 20,000,000 in compensation for their serious holiday complaints. It is the experience of this organisation that along with Political discourse, Litigation has been a powerful ally for the Consumer in the pursuit of increased Standards and Consumer Protection. Frank Brehany Consumer Director/Managing Director HolidayTravelWatch 28 November 2013

6 5 The Holidaymakers Experience The 2010 Holiday Season! We believe that before answering any Consultation questions that we should import into our report the words of the holidaymakers and their experiences. This is a practice that we began in 2005 when we made our first Public comment on the future of the Package Travel Directive (PTD). Given the developments since 2010, we considered that it would be prudent to collate and release those Consumer stories when the new draft PTD was published. The rationale was quite simple; the debate on this important piece of Consumer legislation needed to be framed within the context of real Consumer experiences and rather than continue to provide an annual report! Therefore this report will only contain the stories we have collated from It is our intention over the following months to release Consumer stories for: 2011; 2012; 2013, and During 2010, HTW experienced a very high level of calls for assistance from Consumers. The quality and seriousness of holidaymakers complaints received, was notably higher than from previous years and this Organisation has noted that we have not experienced a fall in the numbers of those wanting further legal assistance; those numbers remain as high as previous years case transfers. In determining the number of actual complainant holidaymakers, it is reasonable to state that each complaint hides on average, a further 3 members of the same party (it is acknowledged that sometimes this figure can range from 1 person up to 20+). It is estimated that we received some 25k individual complaints during the 2010 season. This is considered by HTW to rest at the mid to higher end of expectation of annual complaints received; it is usually nearer to the 20,000 mark.

7 6 For the purposes of this report we are able to demonstrate a period from March 2010 until 31 December This is because the first two months of Consumer stories for 2010 were captured and reported upon in a previous report. In addition to this report, we are also attaching the following reports: 1. EU Fire Safety Report 2013 (this also contains the Consumer Safety International Report) ( Appendix 1); 2. The 2013 HTW report to the UK Department for Transport on proposed amendments to the Travel Consumer Financial Protection scheme (Appendix 2); Both reports illustrate further Consumer comment relevant to the issues of this Consultation. The following detriment examples are written in the words of the holidaymakers who have contacted HTW. We have not sought to change formatting, grammar or spelling except to make an issue clearly understood. Names, organisations and sensitive or inappropriate opinions have been edited. We have chosen to edit the names of the companies, replacing them with a simple explanation as to the various companies statuses. We consider that the holidaymakers comments on detriment are sufficiently powerful without the distraction of naming companies. The majority of complaints have been selected from the period 1 March 2010 to 31 December THIS IS A TEN MONTH PERIOD! We have only chosen a selection of the e mails received from this period. We have not included post or direct helpline commentaries. The examples were chosen at random. HTW experienced difficulty in isolating the complaints into one particular type of complaint or another as many are multi-faceted and cover a range of contractual and personal injury complaints. Many complaints involve DIY/Package arguments The complaints illustrated reflect typically the volume that we receive on a given subject matter, through our various contact options.

8 7 We have provided 893 case examples of Consumer Detriment. Some of the complaints can be summarised in the following manner: 1. Bullying of holidaymakers; 2. Threats to holidaymakers who complain about their travel product; 3. Internet facilities cut when complaints are made; 4. Telephone access cut when complaints are made; 5. Aggressive behaviour by hoteliers when complaints are made; 6. Threats of ejection or the police when complaints are made; 7. Electricity cut to rooms when complaints are made; 8. Exposed wiring; 9. Cracked tiling in swimming pools; 10. Green/Algae swimming pools; 11. Extensive prejudice shown to disabled holidaymakers; 12. Major significant changes to holidays; pre-departure and on arrival; 13. Sewage smells within the holiday product; 14. Accidents within hotel complexes; 15. Illness (both mass and individual) within the holiday product; 16. Bed-bug bites; 17. Incorrect name recording; 18. Poor documentation delivery; 19. Incorrect visa/passport advices; 20. Price discrepancies; 21. Discrimination. Nature of Complaint: Number of Case Studies: Holiday Withheld Deposit Claims 16 Holiday Significant Change Claims 155 Holiday Price Change Claims 20 Holiday Flight Price Change Claims 16

9 8 Holiday Surcharge Claims 4 Holiday DIY/Package Claims 37 Holiday Misrepresentation Claims 30 Holiday Travel Company Claims 132 Holiday Force Majeure Claims 14 Holiday Transfers Claims 10 Holiday Insurance Claims 25 Holiday Hygiene Claims 28 Holiday Booking Claims 92 Holiday Disability Claims 23 Holiday Risk Destination Claims 7 Holiday Quality Complaints Claims 27 Holiday Travel Company Collapse Claims 51 Holiday Name Change Claims 23 Holiday Accident Claims 12 Holiday Sickness Claims 133 Holiday Safety Claims 12 Holiday Visa/Passport Claims 7 Holiday Medical Treatment Claims 3 Holiday Crime Claims 10 Holiday Timeshare/Club Claims 6

10 9 Total: 893 The following Travel Consumer stories and experiences are compelling and demonstrate real and wide scale detriment! Holiday Withheld Deposit Claims: Please can you help,i have booked a holiday with [NAME OF TRAVEL PROVIDER] ABTA [NUMBER].They have taken the cost of the holiday out of my bank account Twice.I have spent 3 hours on the telephone trying to sort it out,but they just leave you on the phone for ever.they never answer.i have sent 2 s and only recieved a automatic reply saying it will be upto 7 Days before they will reply.its over 7 days.please can you help we are out of pocket 748. (EM 31/7/10) A FLIGHT BOOKED WITH [TRAVEL PROVIDER] HAD BE CANCELLED. INSURANCE CO.REIMBURSED ME LESS FLIGHT TAX WHICH THEY SAID SHOULD BE RECOVERED FROM [TRAVEL PROVIDER] WHO HAVE REFUSED REPAYMENT. ARE THEY LEGALY ENTITLED TO DO THIS (EM 3/8/10) I have recentky booked a package holiday online. My last bank statement shows that the holiday company in question has debited the cost of the holiday from my account twice, which is causing me major financial difficulties with other outgoing direct debits... I have contacted them daily by telephone and and I am promised someone will look into it, but I'm not having any luck in getting the money back. What avenues can I explore now? Can my bank assist, or will they advise me to contact the holiday company that made the error? ( EM 3/8/10) I have just spoken to [NAME OF COMPANY] who, when I hired a car for a week in Corsica, not only took the full payment for the car but also another Euro 1,000. The explanation I was given by [NAME OF COMPANY] is that this amount is a precaution to check the card works BUT they themselves were surprised by the amount AND the fact that several weeks after returning the

11 10 car my money had not been returned to me. I still do not have my money back despite the fact that it went through my card and out of my account on 15/16 July. What should I do to warn others of this hidden charge? What can I do to avoid it in future? Thank you for your help (EM 6/8/10) sir my holiday was cancelled on the 21/4/10 since then ive sent 5 s i dont know how many phone calls without a word from them they got my refund from [NAME OF AIRLINE] on the 22/6/10 i managed to speak to one of thieir staff and she took my bank details and said i would get the refund in a day or two that was4 weeks ago.[[travel PROVIDER]] is the travel agent (EM 7/8/10) i booked a hotel with [TRAVEL PROVIDER] and even though i had a voucher and booking number the hotel said there was no booking. i contacted [TRAVEL PROVIDER] when i returned as i had to book another hotel at twice the price and could'nt contact them from the hotel and it has been 6 weeks and i have still not had any money returned. i keep ringing them but keep getting fobbed off what else can i do thanks (EM 7/8/10) We had to cancel our flight on [TRAVEL PROVIDER] on August 20.We were debited with 90% of our flight costs,including Airport Taxes,is this correct. EM 11/8/10) Who do I contact to complain about [TRAVEL PROVIDER].Is there a travel ombudsman? Been waiting for a refund for 13 months now. Keep saying processed to my card but even the bank can't find it. Wrote to them 5th July but no reply. Spoke to them today still same answer,was processed on to my card. Again wanting me to send them bank statements. (EM 23/8/10) Hi I booked a holiday fri to turkey money was taken out of my account but to have a call later to say that the hotel was not available i could get a full refund but it could take up to 3days for it to go back into my account, i then contacted another firm explain what had happened and they

12 11 assured me that no money would be taken out until confimed so i went ahead only to have a call following day saying the same so now i cannot book a holiday as i have to wait for the money to go back into my account which could be longer because of bank hol are they allowed to do this. (EM 29/8/10) my family went on holiday and hired a villa with [TRAVEL PROVIDER]. returned 28th july 2010 for 2wks still waiting for deposit.does not reply to s i have sent every day since returning.what can i do? (EM 3/9/10) Recently hired a gite in france where we experienced various troubles and were not receiving prompt support from the helpline/owners. On return to UK we have not had refund of deposit due and instead a charge for approx 3000 which we have not responded to at present. Please can you help us? (EM 4/9/10) We travelled on a family holiday with [TRAVEL PROVIDER]s on 24 July We have been overcharged by since March Despite s and telephone calls [TRAVEL PROVIDER]s have failed to refund the overcharged amount. We are very disappointed with the customer service and inability to resolve this straightforward dispute. (EM 14/9/10) I paid a deposit for a [TRAVEL PROVIDER] Big Reunion weekend the balance of which had to be paid by Friday 1st Octboder. I called five or six times on that date to pay the balance but was put on hold the longest time being about 25 mins. I then got cut off and told the lines would re-open at 9 O'clock on Monday morning. At 9 I started calling by 5 past 9 I was on hold again and by 9.20 I was eventually answered only to be told that my weekend had been sold to somebody else and that I couldn't have my deposit back even though I had tried to pay. (EM 4/10/10) My husband [NAME], booked a holiday via the internet with [TRAVEL PROVIDER] to go to Turkey on 11 Oct 2010 to 18 Oct However as we went through all of the booking proces, including

13 12 entering our payment details of our credit card, it came up with a message saying that our booking had not been made and that we should contact them via phone instead. Instantly I assumed that it has not gone through, as theire maybe something wrong with our card. Five days later I tried booking again and went through the same process, at the end got a confirmation of booking on the screen, it was in that message it told me to check my inbox for the documentation which will be sent into there. When I did check my inbox, i noticed i had 2 confirmation of booking for two holidays for the same dates. It had obviously als o taken the money for the holiday I tried booking earlier. When i contacted [TRAVEL PROVIDER] to tell them what had happened, they have refused to give my my money back. they have agreed to return my accommodation and transfer money, but will not refund my airline tickets, which is a loss of I totally find this unacceptable. They say that I should of contacted them. However i argued the fact that there was a problem with theire system, it should have told me then if payment was going to be taken. I don't use my account all the time, hence did not read their message re confirmation. Can anything be done about this? (EM 4/10/10) I have recently returned from a holiday in Ibiza in which I rented a villa for a week. I paid a 1000 euro deposit and since my return 6 weeks ago the owner has been avoiding all my calls/ s/letters etc. it has become obvious that he has no intention of paying it back. We rented the villa through [TRAVEL PROVIDER] which put us in touch with the owner. I was hoping that you might have some advice as to how best to reclaim our money. Any help would be much appreciated. (EM 11/11/10) Booked a cruise with [NAME OF CRUISE LINE] through [TRAVEL PROVIDER] for Nov [NAME OF CRUISE LINE] cancelled the whole cruise. We decided we wanted to have our deposit returned to us and not take the rebooking alternative. We were told by [TRAVEL PROVIDER] that this would take 2 to 3 weeks. 3 weeks later, still no money! [TRAVEL PROVIDER] say that they cannot return our money until [NAME OF CRUISE LINE] retutns it to them. But our contract was with [TRAVEL PROVIDER]. We still have no money. What can we do? (EM 2/12/10)

14 13 Holiday Significant Change Claims: Our problem is a we booked our holiday with [TRAVEL PROVIDER], last Feb At the last minute [TRAVEL PROVIDER] has changed the Hotel, as under new managment its been withdrawn. No fault of [TRAVEL PROVIDER]. No fault on our side. Problem being this hotel is cheaper they have sent us a refund of the difference, when we spoke on the phone the supervisor said this was compensation, how?? thats what we have overpaid. Also we booked last feb our argument is surley just good will would mean we pay last feb prices. We are so disapointed we booked to go to a brand new complex 5*, [TRAVEL PROVIDER] now say it's 4* same as we are getting. (EM 1/3/10) Have you any information about [TRAVEL PROVIDER] holidays to the bella vista appartments in kassiopi corfu for 2010.We have heard they have cancelled these appartments for 2010We have booked to go 28/5/2010 for 1week but they have said we will not hear anything till april, when the season starts!!! (EM 2/3/10) Last September I bookd a [TRAVEL PROVIDER] tour to South America through [TRAVEL PROVIDER], I paid the tour in full in Deceember and the flights were booked through [TRAVEL PROVIDER]. This trip is approximatley 4 weeks long travelling through 4 countries. Due to the Inca Trail being closed I was offered the opportunity to change trips/dates, which i did, [NAME OF AIRLINE] are holding open the dates for my flights for 10 March 2010, i need a confirmation of the trip change. this was requested on 22 February through their policy, I am still waiting for a confirmation and I need to let the airline know by tomorrow otherwise I will lose half of my money. I am being fobbed off by the tour company as I feel are [TRAVEL PROVIDER] who booked it. Could you please give me advise as to the standpoint on this? I may lose my flight money, and my dream trip. They are apologetice but noone is making a decision of taking reponsibility. Many Thanks (EM 3/3/10) we have booked a camping holiday for 19th march 2010 for 5 nights, have paid in full when booked jan. 8th we have paid for train tickets which are non refundable, the park have

15 14 now asked us to change dates but we cant, what can we do? (EM 11/3/10) [TRAVEL PROVIDER] has changed the itinerary on its Pharaohs and the Promised Land itinerary departing on April 7. Instead of seeing what it describes in its brochure as the greatest Crusader castle in Syria, we call at a small seaside town in Turkey. Instead of spending two nights in Ashdod, allowing us to see both the Dead Sea and Jerusalem, the ship sails to Haifa, where there is a very small choice of excursions.they have also removed Cairo excursions from the Alexandria stopover. (EM 12/3/10) Have you had any complaints regarding the [NAME OF HOTEL] in Teneriffe. We're booked in on the 4th May but they appear to be having problems with the norovirus.. Thanks (EM 15/3/10) I saw an freom [TRAVEL PROVIDER] of a [NAME OF CRUISE COMPANY] and after phoning up about it booked it for me and a friend after [NAME] I spoke to said there were 2 left. Then I saw the reviews and that [TRAVEL PROVIDER] had the same holiday more than 200 cheaper. I rang 2 hours or less later to cancel was given a no to call on Monday which I did. Next Monday I called them and they called me back to say there would be 90% of the cost lost by me of the price if I cancelled. I had paid for 2 people [TRAVEL PROVIDER]. I cant even check if it was [TRAVEL PROVIDER] cos the no I called Monday after I called to canel didnt know! I phoned back [NAME] on the number he gave me after I paid and I got through on to a girl who could not provide me with any info on anything to do with the cruise on [NAME OF CRUISE SHIP] to canaries on 5 April.. All this has left me cross. Is there not a cooling off period? I would NEVER have booked this if I had known about the state of the ship or seen the pics I saw on the net. (EM 16/3/10) [TRAVEL PROVIDER] are trying to downgrade the accommodation I booked for a family of five holidy all inclusive to Turkey. I'd taken advantage of a early booking deal, booked 4 star accommodation for a two week break 19 July, onwards and my final invoice shows that they are putting us in the Annexe, which is 3 star. Same hotel but lower quality accommodation. After

16 15 spending ages on the phone, they are offering our money back, but there's nothing left at that resort for these dates. [NAME] in their e-commerce dept said that she would try and get things sorted, but one week later, no news. We have to pay the balance in a couple of weeks, please can you advise? How can I get the holdiay I booked? (EM 18/3/10) I booked a holiday tripfor myself and my husband to Cairo, Egypt via [TRAVEL PROVIDER]. The trip was for 4 nights with half board, double room booking at [NAME OF HOTEL] Hotel. About 2 days before departure I ed the hotel in Cairo to arrange transfers from the airport to the hotel. They replied saying that they had no record of my booking and in any case they could not accommodate us for the full length of our stay as they were fully booked for one of the four nights. I attempted to contact [TRAVEL PROVIDER] however their lines were closed for the weekend and the earliest I could call was Monday - the day we were scheduled to leave for Cairo. I called [TRAVEL PROVIDER] when their lines opened Monday morning explaining what I was told by the hotel manager in the and advised them them of my concerns with the hotel booking. They assured me that the hotel booking was made and that the shift manager would investigate the matter immediately and contact me with any updates.needless to say that call never came and the matter was not resolved. We arrived at the hotel in Cairo and the manager repeated that there was no booking for us. As we stood there arguing our case a fax came through to the hotel labelled URGENT with a copy of our booking. (We saw the fax but could not get a copy). Only then did the manager agree to book us in though he advised that the hotel was fully booked the following night so other arrangements would have to be made. We were told we had to check out at 12noon the following day and await further instructions. We checked out before 12noon and were made to wait for over 4 hours while a tour representative (sent on behalf of the agency) tried to find a hotel for us to stay in that night. We were finally "transferred" to [NAME OF HOTEL] hotel (5 mins away) and were told that we could return to [NAME OF HOTEL] Hotel the next day for the remainder of our stay. At [NAME OF HOTEL] hotel we were given a twin bed room and we were told that no half board arrangements had been made so dinner would not be provided. Furthermore no arrangements were made to transfer us back to [NAME OF HOTEL] Hotel and we had to pay for this service ourselves. The entire ordeal left us angry and completely threw our holiday out of order. We had to cancel visits tourist sites and had to cut other visits short in order to make the check out time after the first night. The entire ordeal was a huge inconvenience. When we reported this to [TRAVEL PROVIDER] we were

17 16 equally annoyed by their responses. In total they have offered us 38 in compensation which we feel is not justified. (EM 19/3/10) I booked a holiday with [TRAVEL PROVIDER] in October 2009 to Croatia for May Paid for holiday in March Folowing week [TRAVEL PROVIDER] changed flight times which leads to me losing one day of my holiday, miss my return flight from Gatwick to Glasgow which was booked in October Be forced to endure a further two hour extension onto flights due to a change in the schedule by travelling via Zagreb instead of direct to Dubrovnik. I also lose another day at work as the only flight available to me from Gatwick to Glasgow is at 9pm, ariving Glasgow at pm originally 2.20pm, forcing me to miss my work which I intended to be at for 10pm on May 27. Both [TRAVEL PROVIDER] and [TRAVEL PROVIDER] refuse to return my deposit of 180 (EM 22/3/10) I am looking for advice and support following a terrible experience whilst travelling with [TRAVEL PROVIDER] to the Maldives. My parents booked a treat 14k holiday for my 40th birthday to Maldives. An island they had sepcifically chosen having been before. less than 48 hrs before departing we were told the island of our choice was fully booked. We were told to spend the first 3 nights elsewhere and then transfer. This did not happen, we then had to spend more nights on another island and on it wnet for the duration of our holiday and we never actually arrived on the island that we booked. We had 10 days of not knowing where we were satying when we were leaving and we never un packed! A total lack of communication from [TRAVEL PROVIDER] mean't I sepnt most of my holiday in an internet cafe trying to find out information. [TRAVEL PROVIDER] have offered a 500 voucher off the next holiday! But what about the 14K we spent on this one! (EM 22/3/10) I booked a holiday with [TRAVEL PROVIDER], for my boyfiend an I, we wer going 2nd March on 1st March they rang to say r hotel the [NAME OF HOTEL] was closed, an they wer putting us in another 1 called the [NAME OF HOTEL] an they wud inform the pick up company wen we got ther. On arriving the man that picked us up did not no an took us to the [NAME OF HOTEL], i told him we wer going to another 1 now, wer he took us was way out from anywer, on

18 17 arrival the staff wer friendly but the hotel was full of golf people as the golf course was at the side of the hotel. We did not see any rep to complaine an we had to get buses every wer we went, 1 night we went for sumthing to eat by the Marina an 4 men approched usshout stuff an laughing i felt very thretend my partner is a big man but he wudnt ov stood a chance against 4 ov them so we wen t into a pub an stayed ther until they had gone. I just fell that we sud ov seen a rep or sum1 to tell us wer the bad parts ov Costa De Sol (EM 22/3/10) Booked on holiday to Egypt with [TRAVEL PROVIDER] ABTA No [NUMBER]. Received about 1.30pm on advising me to call back by end of day (17.30) as they had not had confirmation of flights and would cancel the holiday, which they have now done. Do not feel this is sufficient time when people do not return from work until after this time. Tried to call this morning and was holding for over twenty minutes in que and still no answered. This flight is still being advertised on their website and I have taken a screen shot as evidence. (EM 27/3/10) We went on a Nile Cruise in Ocober 2009 with [TRAVEL PROVIDER]. We booked in person with a travel agent to ensure that what we booked was the holiday we wanted - so we could ask questions e[travel PROVIDER]. We explained that we are full time foster carers and the most important part of our holiday was to be that it was an adults only one. This was our only holiday away together alone so we wanted it to be special. A Nile Cruise was a perfect choice and the travel agent explained that no children under 12 would be allowed to go on the cruise. The first four days of our holiday was fantastic and we must praise [TRAVEL PROVIDER] and everyone that put together the package as it was fantastic. However, on the return up the Nile when we were looking forward to three days of quiet relaxation things changed. German and Japanese families joined our boat and there were three children - one of which must have only been about 4 years old. All definately under 12 years old. (EM 31/3/10) We booked for our holiday this year in august last year on the [TRAVEL PROVIDER] website. We have paid in full for this holiday. It is a resort we have been to for 7 years, but this particular hotel only once before. We have now heard that the hotel has not and does not ntend to have a contract with [TRAVEL PROVIDER] this year, yet [TRAVEL PROVIDER] are still saying they are

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