Package Travel Directive: major amendments are needed to protect jobs and competitiveness!
Athens, 18 October 2013 – HOTREC, the business association representing the European hospitality industry, warned that the new rules proposed by the European Commission on package holidays need major amendments to preserve jobs creation and competitiveness of the European hospitality industry.
During HOTREC’s 67th General Assembly, CEO’s and Presidents representing the hospitality sector in 27 different European countries agreed that the proposed extension of the scope and obligations of the Package Travel Directive will considerably impact the hospitality industry in Europe.
"The new Directive will result in significant divergences in the legal regime applicable to different forms of hotel bookings and in substantial new costs for hospitality businesses in Europe. Without major amendments, it will hurt both the industry’s competitiveness and job creation in hospitality businesses” warned Mr. Kent Nyström, President of HOTREC.
Indeed, many hospitality establishments offering their services online risk being caught by the proposed expansion of the scope and obligations of the Package Travel Directive, while the provisions on the right to terminate the contract for packages including accommodation will create confusion on the holiday market, as the same accommodation service sold alone would not be subject to such right.
HOTREC therefore calls on the European Parliament and on the Council to take into consideration its Position Paper on the matter and to amend the Commission proposal accordingly, as the competitiveness of one of the few industries that kept creating jobs during the economic crisis is at stake.
HOTREC considers, in particular, that the new Directive should clearly state that transport services ("carriage of passengers”) should be the central element constituting a package in the meaning of the Directive. Such amendment would allow hospitality businesses offering more packages, creating more jobs, while providing no consumer detriment.