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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 63343
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor
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We booked a holiday through our regular agent, after 3

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We booked a holiday through our regular agent, after 3 months i called on them as I hadn’t received confirmation or receipt for my £300.00 deposit. I was given the paper work, at which point I decided to pay the outstanding and asked if I could book our seats, as we didn’t want to sit apart, I was asked for a £120 booking fee, which I was taken aback as we had booked business class! I checked with my wife that I wasn’t overreacting, but she agreed, but that we would pay but check that there weren’t any other surprises in store, which was when we discovered that apart from a few plants the balconies where shared, which we said was not acceptable, the agent then said we would need to upgrade for a further £650 which took our 2 week B&B holiday to over £5000.00 we decided this was too much & cancelled which was 142 days before departure, but the agent wont return our £300.00 deposit. Do we have any rights?
JA: Where are you? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: Essex
JA: What steps have you taken so far?
Customer: I’ve written to the booking agent asking for a refund on 22/12/2019 but so far they have not replied
JA: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: only that the business class seating is what BA call their Premium plus short haul seats, so not business class in the true sense

Hello, I’m Ben, a UK lawyer and will be dealing with your case today. I may also need to ask some questions to determine the legal position.

When exactly did you make the booking and what is the agents' cancellation policy?

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
18/09/2019, the agent says their cancellation policy is a non refundable deposit, but there is nothing on the paperwork that I have been supplied with that says this. This is an agent that I have used for 15 years

Thank you. I will get back to you with my answer as soon as I can, which will be at some point today. The system will notify you when this happens. Please do not reply in the meantime as this may unnecessarily delay my response. Many thanks.

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
Ok
Customer: replied 1 month ago.
Please don’t call
Customer: replied 1 month ago.
What’s happened?

Many thanks for your patience. Whether you can cancel will depend on whether you did not actually get what you were promised. You need to be clear about what you were told you are getting at the time of booking and what you actually got. So if you were clearly misled into booking things which you were not given and had to pay extra to get at a later stage, you could argue that you have been missold the holiday and should be able to cancel with a full refund.

 

Whilst you cannot force them to refund you, you can consider taking it further to try and recover the money paid.

 

If a party wishes to pursue another for a debt arising out of a dispute between them, they can do so by making a claim in the civil courts. As legal action should ideally be used as a last resort, there are certain steps that should be taken initially to try and resolve this matter informally and without having to involve lawyers or the courts. These can be summarised below and it is recommended the following procedure is followed to try and progress this matter further:

 

1. Reminder letter – if no informal reminders have been sent yet, one should be sent first to allow the other party to voluntarily settle this matter.

 

2. Letter before action – if informal reminders have been sent but have been ignored, the other party must be sent a formal ‘letter before action’ asking them to resolve this amicably within a specified period of time, usually 7 to 14 days. They should be advised that if they fail to do contact you in order to resolve this matter, formal legal proceedings will be commenced to pursue them for the debt in question. This letter serves as a ‘final warning’ and gives the other side the opportunity to resolve this matter without the need for legal action.

 

3. If they fail to pay or at least make contact to try and resolve this, formal legal proceedings can be initiated. A claim can be commenced online by going to www.moneyclaim.gov.uk. Once the claim form is completed a copy will be sent to the other side and they will have a limited time to defend it. Once they are aware that legal proceedings have commenced it may also force them to reconsider their position and perhaps prompt them to contact you to try and resolve this.

 

As a final tip, it is always advisable to keep copies of any correspondence sent and received as the courts would like to refer to it if it ever gets that far.

 

Does this answer your query?

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
Thank you yes, I basically have followed your advice, thank you for an exhaustive reply, certainly £5 well spent ��

You are most welcome

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