How does the new Package Travel Directive affect non-European tourism suppliers?
In July 2018, the new European Package Travel Directive came into force. This Directive is an update of the original legislation from 1990, designed to ensure European travellers’ rights when booking package holidays. With the rise of online sales, a revision was needed to keep travellers sufficiently protected.
What is the Package Travel Directive?
The Package Travel Directive now covers online and offline sales. It has extended the definition of ‘package travel’, to include any combination of at least two types of these travel services:
- car rental
- other services, like guided tours
To protect travellers, some of the key topics the Directive addresses are liability and insolvency protection. It provides strong traveller rights, for example in terms of cancellation, repatriation and refunds.
The Directive applies to any trader selling travel packages to European travellers, regardless of the trader’s location. It includes direct sales, as well as sales via a retailer. Because they are responsible for all services in their packages, European tour operators may well translate their requirements into demands on their suppliers.
Exploring the Package Travel Directive with CBI
At Globally Cool we specialise in business-to-business (B2B) market intelligence. For CBI, we research how to attract European travellers for tourism suppliers from developing countries. Our team decided the Package Travel Directive would be a key topic to cover in 2018. How does this new Directive affect the non-European tourism suppliers we are trying to support?
In April 2018, we explored the impact of the Directive in a CBI focus group with European and developing country tourism companies and sector organisations, as well as a legal expert. The emphasis of the discussion was on the potential effects of the new legislation on suppliers from developing countries.
Market intelligence study on how to work with the Package Travel Directive
To support tourism suppliers in developing countries, we put together a market intelligence study on how to work with the new 2018 European Package Travel Directive. Because the Directive is new, its concrete implications are not yet certain and future legal challenges may be needed to create clarity. The study presents a general overview, along with some preliminary interpretations and predictions of several industry experts, as well as practical tips.