LONG-HAUL HOL­I­DAYS WILL BE TAI­LOR-MADE ON­LINE

The Daily Telegraph - Travel - - FRONT PAGE -

The com­pany that owns Kuoni an­nounced its new on­line brand Meraki Travel (mer­ak­i­travel.co.uk), which launches next month of­fer­ing tai­lor-made long-haul hol­i­days. This is a dif­fi­cult con­cept to put on­line, as itin­er­ar­ies are com­plex and costs are high. Many trav­ellers pre­fer to book only af­ter talk­ing to ex­pert agents.

Mean­while, the chief ex­ec­u­tive of Saga pointed out that although on­line brows­ing and re­search was in­creas­ing, there is a no­tice­able re­sis­tance among some of his cus­tomers to com­mit to book­ing with­out speak­ing to an agent. It will be in­ter­est­ing to see whether Meraki can crack this one.

ABe­cause TAP Air Por­tu­gal gave you no­tice of the can­cel­la­tion less than seven days be­fore your de­par­ture, you are en­ti­tled, un­der EU law, to claim €400 per per­son in com­pen­sa­tion for the in­con­ve­nience – as long as the re­place­ment flight ar­rived more than three hours af­ter your orig­i­nal flight.

In my ex­pe­ri­ence, TAP has poor post-flight cus­tomer ser­vices. Read­ers have strug­gled even to get re­funds for un­used tick­ets af­ter the air­line has can­celled flights which it does from time to time. So it is heart­en­ing to see that TAP has now signed up with an al­ter­na­tive dis­pute res­o­lu­tion (ADR) com­pany which will take up pas­sen­ger com­plaints against air­lines that have signed up to use its ser­vices as a me­di­a­tor. That should make it much eas­ier to claim any com­pen­sa­tion due.

In this case TAP’s of­fer of vouch­ers was a par­tic­u­larly gen­er­ous one – worth more than twice the le­gal

EASY AC­CESSAm­s­ter­dam now has a di­rect rail link from Lon­don

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