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Office of Competition and Consumer Protection

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Things to remember before holidays

< previous | next > 03.07.2017

Things to remember before holidays
  • What should every consumer look out for during holidays?
  • For the eight consecutive time, more than 40 different institutions have prepared a joint message for consumers ahead of the holiday season.

The Office of Competition and Consumer Protection receives an increasing number of complaints related to services in the tourism sector. These mostly pertain to individual cases such as poor accommodation standards or failure to make appropriate arrangements ahead of the tour. Consumer ombudsmen provide consumers with their support in all these matters. However, we have also received notifications which formed the basis for the commencement of the appropriate proceedings. These pertain, among others, to changes in flight departure or arrival times which could mean that the given trip abroad may be as much as two days shorter than originally planned.

At the present stage, the Competition Authority is conducting 12 different proceedings pertaining to tourism services. Among the issues which have caused our concern, there is the manner in which travel agencies notify their customers of changes in departure or arrival times and the way they handle complaints in this regard (Neckerman Polska, Nowa Itaka, Rainbow Tours, Tui Poland). Furthermore, we are also looking into the rules governing the deductions made from the amounts refunded in the event of cancellation. According to the act on tourism services, the deductions in question should correspond to the costs actually incurred (Rainbow Tours, Nowa Itaka). The UOKiK is also examining whether advertising brochures may mislead the customers as to the standard of the rooms offered.

The Competition Authority is also analysing the practices of ticket sales agents. The practices of the online service known as esky.pl were among those which have caused our concern. Consumer notifications suggest that the website in question may apply ambiguous rules as to the calculation of luggage fees during the booking process. In addition, the practice whereby the undertaking in question would sell tickets with insurance automatically included in the price, leaving it to the customer to cancel this option if not interested in purchasing such insurance, was considered highly questionable.

It is now the eighth consecutive time that we provide consumers with advice during our joint information campaign called Things to remember before holidays. Over 40 different institutions take part in this campaign, their objective being to remind consumers about the rights which they enjoy. The institutions which take part in our campaign this year are: the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of National Education, the Ministry of Sports and Tourism, the Ministry of Finance, the European Consumer Centre, the Financial Ombudsman, the Ombudsman for Children, the Main Sanitary Inspectorate, the National Food and Nutrition Institute, the Police Headquarters, the Central Institute for Labour Protection – Centre for Research and Development, the Volunteer Water Rescue Organisation, the General Directorate of the State Forest Holding, the Institute of Meteorology and Water Management, the Inspector General for Personal Data Protection, the Office of Electronic Communications, the Civil Aviation Office, the Office of Rail Transport, the General Director for National Roads and Motorways, the Tatry National Park, the Minister of the Environment, the Institute for Motor Transport, the Energy Regulatory Office, the Headquarters of the State Fire Service, the National Health Fund, and the Scientific and Academic Computer Network. In addition, the Province Trade Inspection Authorities from the following cities have also joined our campaign this year: Bia³ystok, Bydgoszcz, Gdańsk, Gorzów Wielkopolski, Katowice, Kielce, Cracow, Lublin, £ód¼, Opole, Poznań, Rzeszów, Warsaw, Wroc³aw, Szczecin.

Additional information for the media:

Press Office of UOKiK 
Pl. Powstańców Warszawy 1, 00-950 Warszawa
Phone: 695 902 088
Email: [SCODE]Yml1cm9wcmFzb3dlQHVva2lrLmdvdi5wbA==[ECODE]

Twitter: @UOKiKgovPL

 

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