Can I get a refund if I cancel my holiday in Italy as coronavirus fears spread?
Italy currently has the highest number of coronavirus cases in Europe, reason why the Italian government announced that the entire Country has now very severe restrictions, including travelling within the Country.
Many tourists, also coming from other Countries, had their flights cancelled and cannot longer travel to Italy.
Many travellers and people who booked their holidays in Italy have rights for their flights, holidays, etc. to be refunded, however it is not rare that the companies deny some requests for no justified reasons.
The big question now is whether customers have the right to get refunded because they were imposed, somehow, not to travel, or if the refund is not due because the coronavirus is an extraordinary event which does not cover the right to be refunded.
Flights and Tour packages:
Your flight or tour package has been cancelled because your Country of destination does not allow people coming from Italy to enter?
In this case, generally talking, the company or tour operator has 15 days time to refund you or release you a voucher of the same amount of money spent to book your holiday. The voucher can be spent within 1 year after its issuance. In this case, flight companies or tour operators have the right to decide whether to reimburse you or releasing a voucher.
Your flight has been cancelled due to the decision of the company to cut costs, and modify routes from/to Italy?
In this case, the company has to refund the entire cost of the flight, or give you the opportunity to rebook your flight in a different time and at the same price. The refund/voucher has to be given within 7 days. In this case the right to decide whether to have a refund or a voucher is not of the company, but the costumer choose between the two options.
Your flight/tour package has not been cancelled, however you decide not to travel to Italy for well-known reasons related to coronavirus?
If you were concerned about the virus, and you took the decision not to travel to Italy, your options for a cancellation or refund may be limited. In this case, in fact, the decision not to travel is entirely yours. However, the coronavirus is considered as an extraordinary circumstance, therefore the consumer has the right to withdraw the contract with no penalties. Moreover, the situation continues to develop, and refund policies are likely to change.
The Italian Government has decided to adopt some measures in relation to the right for a reimbursement in case of cancellation of trips and tour packages.
As per the urgent Law-Decree nr. 9/2020 recently issued by the Italian Government, several measures have been taken in terms of protecting all customer’s rights.
As per the recent Decree you can cancel your holiday for “supervening impossibility of performance”, in several cases. These cases refer to situations in which the risk is to spread the virus or in case of limited possibility to enjoy your holiday. In fact, if your flight has not been cancelled, but you cannot reach the Country where you planned your holiday because that Country does not allow people from Italy to disembark, you have the right for a refund.
The same happens if the reason of your journey is no longer achievable, for example when you organized your trip because of an event, meeting, public competition etc. If that event has been cancelled due to Covid-19, and you cannot longer attend it, you have the right to be refunded.
Whenever you have the right to get your refund, you need to send the related communication within 30 days after the end of the imposed ban (quarantine, limitations); after the cancellation/suspension of the event; after the date in which you were supposed to travel, and you could not longer go due to limitations imposed by the Country of destination.
The company has to refund you within 15 days from your communication, or alternatively, has to release you a voucher. The voucher is valid 1 year after its issuance.
Can I cancel my train ticket in Italy for Coronavirus reasons?
The Law-Decree issues in March 9th, 2020 established that the entire Italian territory is considered as a “red” area, meaning that strong restrictions and limitations are imposed to the entire population. These limitations will last at least until the April 3rd, 2020, with possibility of extending the deadline if the Country will not win its fight against the pandemic.
Many people who have booked train tickets to travel from North to South, from Est. to West and vice-versa, can still move, but only in few cases clearly established by Law. This means that a simple holiday is not a justified reason for you to move from a place to another within the Country.
Given the above, it would be very unfair not allowing people to get a refund; therefore you can obtain a voucher for the same amount of money spent for booking your train.
These and more questions are arising during this particular time; lawyers at Luxury Law are always ready to answer all your questions on this topic, by giving you a straightforward answer and alternative ways to get your refund.