Making a complaint about a holiday can be a frustrating experience for anyone who has been let down by their UK tour operator after a holiday from hell.
Through experience, we understand the anger and disappointment you are probably feeling and so we have set out some top tips to guide you through the process of making a successful holiday complaint to your tour operator.
Important: If your holiday complaint concerns and accident or an illness then before you contact your tour operator you should seek legal advice.
Why? It is important that you seek professional legal advice as the value of your compensation claim may be substantial and if you attempt to deal with your tour operator directly then you may be encouraged to settle your claim for a fraction of its true value.
We offer a completely free advice service for anyone who has fallen ill or been injured whilst on holiday.
At Simpson Millar LLP Solicitors we receive many calls and emails daily from angry and upset holidaymakers whose holidays have been nothing like the one that was advertised in the holiday brochure or on the holiday company’s website.
Because we are so accustomed to helping people with complaints against tour operators we thought it would be useful to provide a short guide about to how to complain successfully.
"If your dispute goes to court you will be able to show that you did everything correctly to try and resolve your complaint."
"A judge will read all the correspondence before a court hearing so you do not want to give him the impression that you are rude and unreasonable."
"This will ensure that your complaint is not lost and that you have an electronic read receipt to confirm when your complaint was received by the tour operator."
"It is more effective to list your complaints and insist that each complaint is addressed individually otherwise you may receive a response that does not address any complaint individually."
"Associations such as ABTA fine their members if they do not adhere to the associations Code of Conduct. ABTA’s Code make it incumbent upon the tour operator to acknowledge a complaint within 14 days of receipt and to provide a full response within 28 days. You can report the tour operator to ABTA if your tour operator does not reply in the timescale."
"Hard evidence is difficult to dispute. A judge will ask for evidence as it is up to you to prove your complaints are valid."
"Remember again that a judge might read your letter. Only ask for what you honestly believe is fair. There is no point asking for a full refund of your holiday cost if only some parts of your holiday fell below a reasonable standard."
"Often complaints are misunderstood. By actually discussing your complaint with the person charged with handling it you may be able to explain your complaint more accurately and the person handling your complaint may then be more sympathetic."
"A manager is likely to have more authority and discretion to resolve your dispute."
"You can find out more about the arbitration service operated by trade organisations by visiting their website. ABTA’s arbitration service can be accessed by clicking this link. To find out more about making a small claim in your local county court click this link."
You have 6 years from the date of your holiday to start court proceedings if your complaint concerns a breach of contract.
A breach of contract includes being supplied with substandard holiday services and facilities. It can also include misrepresentation if your holiday was mis-sold or mis-described.
If your complaint concerns a problem with an airline cruise ship or something that happened on an airplane or cruise ship then the time limits may be only 2 years.
Important: If you have had an accident and suffered an injury while on holiday or you have been ill or suffered from food poisoning then the small claims court or arbitration will not be appropriate for you. You should seek legal advice and help from solicitors who are specialists in holiday compensation claims and can offer a no win no fee claim service.
Accident and illness complaints have different timescales. Time limits are different for claims involving accidents abroad or sickness and may be as short as 3 years from the date the personal injury was sustained.
Tour operators and holiday companies are unscrupulous when it comes to paying compensation. They want to pay a little as they can so it is vitally important that you know exactly what you can claim for and how much you are entitled to seek.
We can help if your complaint concerns an accident abroad or at a hotel or an illness caused by poor hygiene or food poisoning.
At Simpson Millar LLP Solicitors our holiday complaints team of lawyers have had many years of experience of winning compensation for victims of accidents and illness on holiday.
For absolutely free advice get in touch with us today and find out our no win no fee offer and find out about your claim in the best hands.
Get your compensation claim started and let us do the rest.
Get in touch for a chat about how we can help you by filling in our quick, no obligation enquiry form and we will call you back or you can call us directly on 0808 145 1353.
We have helped many people claim holiday compensation eg: