Horrible holiday? Here’s how to get compensation

If your holiday didn’t quite go to plan this year, you may be able to claim compensation in respect of any additional costs that you have incurred or if you have been left disappointed. The process and your eligibility for compensation will depend on how you booked the holiday and with whom.

Package Holidays

If you booked a package holiday through a tour operator, there are several situations in which you may be able to claim compensation from the tour operator if your holiday doesn’t go to plan:

  1. If you were left out of pockets due to a problem with the holiday, for example, if you had to pay for another hotel because the hotel was overbooked.
  2. If you were disappointed due to a problem with the holiday, for example, if the pool was closed for your entire stay.
  3. If you paid more for the holiday that you booked than the one you received, for example, if you booked a deluxe suite but were given a standard room.

However, you cannot claim for compensation if you simply did not enjoy the holiday or if the problem was out of the control of the tour operator, for example if the weather was not as you had expected.

If you cannot come to an agreement with the tour operator, you should check if they are a member of ABTA (the Association of British Travel Agents); if so, you can register a complaint with ABTA on their website. If this is still unsuccessful, you can contact ABTA directly as they are to mediate between you and the company to achieve a solution.



If you are in the unfortunate situation where you flight is cancelled, then your tour operator should either organise an alternative flight for your or should be provided with a refund for the cost of the cancelled flight.

If the airline you are due to fly with goes bust before your holiday, you should check if you holiday is covered by the ATOL (Air Travel Organisers’ Licensing) Scheme as you may be able to obtain a refund. If this happens whilst you are on holiday and it is covered by the Scheme, you should be able to finish your holiday and obtain a flight home without incurring any additional costs.

What if I booked the holiday myself?

It will be more difficult to recover compensation if you booked the holiday yourself as you will have different contracts with different companies such as the airline and the hotel and some of which may not be based in the UK. However it does not mean that you will be unable to claim and should check each of the company’s complaints procedures if the holiday does not go to plan.

If you do decide to seek compensation it always pays to have an expert in your corner. The representatives of holiday companies may attempt to settle claims for much less than they are worth. Speak to one of our team today by calling us on 0191 284 0363 so you can ensure you get exactly what you deserve.