Travel Booking Tips and More by European Consumer Bodies
In efforts to ensure the rights of travelers/consumers, the European Consumer Centers Network (ECC-Net) carried out a survey looking into the hidden costs of airline tickets, hotels, car rentals, Timeshare or other services purchased online.
In 2015, 19 percent of consumers contacted ECC-Net for advice and help on issues related to their holidays. Out of a total of 23,102 complaints submitted, 10,286 were related to online bookings.
According to the survey, the final cost in 70 percent of the complaint reports did not correspond to the initial offer with the majority of cases involving online booking of low cost airline tickets. Consumers were faced in the end with additional charges, including management fees, credit card charges, extra charge for electronic check-in services or baggage checks, placement-related charges or a change of data.
Through the publication of Travel Tips: Help and Advice for Consumers in Europe the ECC-Net in collaboration with the European Consumer Center of Greece (ECC-Greece) advises holidaymakers to:
- take their time before booking as there is no option for free cancellation
- check if additional services are being charged
- demand a list of charges including taxes
- read the General Terms and Conditions of car insurance deals before accepting
- make sure there are no pre-ticked boxes for extra services
- prefer payment methods that can be withdrawn through a transaction dispute with your bank
- avoid money transfers cash transfers or wire transfers
- and before giving the final OK, check the page again and make sure you keep a receipt.