Germany, Italy and Spain join calls for suspension of EU airline refund rules

After the Brexit: Quo vadis, EU? | Heinrich Böll Stiftung ...

The governments of Germany, Italy and Spain have joined 12 others in the EU demanding a suspension of airline refund rules.

Under EU 261 denied boarding regulations, airlines must refund customers within seven days of a flight being cancelled.

However, many airlines are facing drastic liquidity issues and are unable to issue cash refunds within that time frame.

The European Commission has issued new guidance and sanctioned credit notes being issued instead of cash only when passengers accept them.

Last Wednesday 12 EU governments called on the union’s executive body to suspend the rules and yesterday Germany, Italy and Spain were reported to have joined them.

French transport minister Jean-Baptiste Djebbari said in a statement: “I’m glad a very large majority of member states are supporting my request to authorise airlines and maritime groups to temporarily use vouchers when trips are cancelled, so as to relieve their cash reserves while protecting passengers’ rights to a refund.”

Governments in favour of a temporary change in the rules have said vouchers should be valid for a set period and include the right to reimbursement if they are not used before the expiry date.

They also want to ensure that financial protection is provided in the case of airline bankruptcies.

P&O Cruises issues Brexit reassurance

Image result for p&o britannia

P&O Cruises has issued a series of promises to its passengers in a bid to ease any fears over Brexit.

As uncertainty mounts over the UK leaving the EU, the line reminded passengers they will avoid foreign currency fluctuations due to onboard spending being in pound sterling.

P&O Cruises also reminded passengers that all cruises with the line will be protected by Atol and Abta.

P&O Cruises president Paul Ludlow said: “We want to reassure our guests that whatever is happening in the world of politics, their holiday and peace of mind is of the utmost important to us.

“Our Brexit promise is that no matter what the future brings, our guests can rest assured when booking a P&O Cruises holiday as they will always pay in pounds sterling in advance and can take advantage of a low deposit to secure their holiday.

He added: “Also, a P&O Cruises holiday offers unbeatable value as so much is included as standard including meals, entertainment, children’s clubs, flights and taxes.

“With sailings directly from Southampton and by choosing shore excursions in advance, our guests can explore Europe without the need for euros.

“In addition, the currency on the ships is pounds which covers all shopping, dining, drinks, indulgent treatments in the spa and a range of shops with favourite British jewellery, clothing and cosmetic brands. We also have the protection of both Atol and Abta.

“With over 180 years of P&O history and expertise, we guarantee to manage any potential impact on holiday plans and help our customers sail through Brexit and onto their next cruise.”