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Thursday 16 April 2020

Leading tour company refusing refunds

One of Australia's biggest travel companies has retrospectively changed its refund policy to deny refunds to customers whose trips were cancelled due to Covid-19.

Topdeck, which is one of Australia’s biggest youth travel operators, altered its refund policy and has applied it retrospectively to deny refunds to customers for trips that were cancelled due to the pandemic.

Like most operators, Topdeck has been forced to cancel all tours until mid-2020 at the earliest.

It promised travellers refunds for cancellations but last week told customers it had “updated” the refund policy, and would now only be giving credit for future travel, plus an additional $100. The credit expires in December 2021.

Some customers previously promised a refund were denied one, The Guardian reported.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission website says: "If you had a right to a refund under these terms and conditions at the time you purchased your ticket, businesses are not permitted to change the terms at a later time to deny you a refund."

Founded in 1973, Topdeck is a tour operator providing trips for people aged 18 to 39 throughout Europe, North America, Africa and the Middle East, Australia, New Zealand and Asia. Topdeck offers 330 different tours in 65 countries.

It looks as if Topdeck is being tricky here - and this could get messy.

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