Modifications and redress
It can happen that the price of the package holiday changes: this is possible only if the contract foresees it, with the definition of the calculation ways and in any case, the price cannot increase in the 20 days before the departure, as article 40 of the Tourism Code states.
In particular, the price revision can happen as a consequence to a change in the cost of transport, of fuel, of charges and taxes in ports and airports or because of a change in the exchange rate.
Costs have however be correctly explained by the seller and the revision cannot be higher than 10% of the initial price. When the price increase is higher than that, the customer can withdraw and be reimbursed of the advance payment.
If before departure the organizer or the intermediary have to do significant changes to some elements of the contract, they have to inform in writing the customer. He can decide whether to accept or not the modification and to withdraw without penalties, by communicating it in writing to the organizer or intermediary within two working days from the day of receiving the information.
When the customer withdraws because of a significant change or when the trip is cancelled before departure for any reason, according to article 42 of the Tourism Code, the customer has the right to:
- use another package holiday of equivalent value or superior without a price increase, or an inferior package holiday after restitution of the price difference; or
- get a refund of the advance payment within 7 days from withdrawal or cancellation.
In these cases the customer has the right to be reimbursed of any other damage caused by the non execution of the contract, unless the cancellation is due to the lack of the minimum number of participants and the customer was informed about it at least 20 days before departure, or because of force majeure.
Withdrawal by the consumer. In case the contract has been signed on the premises of the organizer or the intermediary, the law does not foresee the right of withdrawal free of charge. In this case it is necessary to follow the contractual terms: normally there are penalties to pay, whose sum increases as we get closer to departure and can reach the total price of the holiday. To be protected in these cases, it is good to buy an optional insurance that covers these penalties.
There are particular cases where the consumer cannot enjoy fully his holiday because of events independent from his will, from the organizer and from the intermediary ( for example natural disasters, terrorist attacks…). In these cases, if the service can still be provided, the consumer can withdraw by paying the penalty, unless there is an announcement of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs that advice against holidays in a certain place. In these cases the consumer has the right to obtain another package in another destination or alternatively the refund of the advance payments.
To have more information about the security of the destination country, it is advisable to consult the site www.viaggiaresicuri.it, where the Ministry for Foreign Affairs publishes regularly updates about unsafe places.
If it is impossible to use the purchased package, the consumer can give the contract to a third party, according to article 39 of the Tourism Code.