Consumer's Telegram February 2021Insert of n. 13 - Editorial office: Centro Europeo Consumatori (European Consumer Centre Italy - Bolzano office)
What Early Bookers should Consider during Corona TimesWith the current icy temperatures, many people long for summer and look forward to their vacation in warmer climes. In the first few weeks of the year, those who tend to book in advance traditionally go on a hunt for bargains. Those who booked the summer vacation 2020 a year ago did it with the usual ease, but by the end of February horror news of corona outbreaks on cruise ships had alerted consumers. With the lockdown in spring, consumers could not leave at all and in the summer it was often the consumers themselves who no longer had the desire or money to travel. The ECC will tell you what to look out for if you are about to book a trip now for the second summer since the beginning of the Pandemic: https://bit.ly/391HSRi.
What are the Consequences for European ConsumersBrexit is done. Starting with the passport, which will be required for trips to the United Kingdom from October 1st, to the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC), which is no longer valid there, a lot has changed for European consumers. However, much remains the same (at least for the moment). For example, anyone who buys on a British online shop can still count on the application of European consumer rights such as the right of withdrawal or warranty, based on the principle: If a seller directs his own activities to consumers who are based in a certain country, then the applicable law is the one of the country in which the consumer is domiciled. You can find more information on this topic on the website of the European Consumer Center (ECC).
The Role of Prevention is FundamentalIn the time of Covid-19, inevitably more people have entered the internet world, exposing themselves to potential scams. To be able to avoid them, the only weapon is preventive information. Whether it is a fraudulent online trading platform, offers of branded goods on fake shops, trap subscriptions regarding streaming, or alleged prize games on social networks: only those who know how to recognize the dangers can protect themselves! In 2021, the European Consumer Center will deal even more with this issue, as preventive information is unquestionably the best weapon that can be used against criminal activities on the Internet. More information on this topic is available on the ECC website (https://bit.ly/39SYOs6).
CASE OF THE MONTH
About a year ago, an Italian consumer was planning a trip to London with her husband. Unfortunately, the consumer's father fell seriously ill a few days before the departure and had to be hospitalized in a life-threatening condition. The consumer immediately informed the UK-based airline that it was impossible for her to travel and provided evidence of her father's illness and his need for assistance with medical certificates. The company replied that it would only refund the airport taxes. The consumer turned to ECC Italy, which forwarded the case to colleagues in the UK. After their intervention, the airline reversed its previous decision and refunded the consumer the full price.