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The EU Package Travel Directive: Unintended Consequences.

The EU Package Travel
Directive: Unintended Consequences.


Unintended Consequences

1.       As
the principal (the tour operator) can easily pass on the costs of compensation
there is little incentive to robustly defend the supplier, and the supplier is
not able to defend themselves.

2.       The
Package Travel Directive has the unintended consequence of reducing market
access for small scale producers and the informal sector.


The EU Package Travel Directive (PTD) has substantially extended
the rights of consumers against the suppliers (agents and principals) of
package travel arrangements and the PTD is being reviewed in order to revise
the PTD in particular to cover dynamic packaging. The PTD has successfully extended
the responsibilities of tour operators providing a remedy for European consumers
when the contract is not delivered or when inadequate information is provided.


I wish that these provisions could be extended to my local railway
company. It is ironic that I have significantly better consumer rights on a
package holiday in Mongolia
than I do when travelling on the railway from Faversham to London.


There are unintended consequences of the PTD which the
Commission should be mindful of in any revision of the Directive.


  1. The
    process by which compensation is paid and funded is opaque. The main
    effect of the PTD is not seen in the cases which go to court but rather in
    the routine administrative processes which result from the Directive and which
    are legitimised by it.


UK tour operators determine whether
or not a complaint or claim should be compensated financially and then, where
they consider the fault to lie with their supplier, recharge the cost to the
supplier through the recovery or reclaims department. Generally the supplier
will have no say over whether or not the tour operator decides to pay compensation,
nor over how much. But the supplier will pay the bill as the amounts will be deducted
from the supplier

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