Outrigger Hotels and Resorts

Published on Thursday, November 19, 2020

Travel Republic adds Covid cover to every booking

Online agency Travel Republic is looking to restore consumer confidence by adding complimentary Covid insurance to every booking.

The offer is part of a plan to reassure holidaymakers that even in the event of cancellations or last minute changes, bookings will be protected.

The agency also took a veiled swipe at competitors by spelling out that 'unlike some travel agents and OTAs', Travel Republic 'remains a proud member of ABTA'.

"Combined with our ATOL certification, this means customers can be assured the company will adhere to strict codes of conduct, and that any money they spend on package holidays with Travel Republic is protected in the unlikely event something goes wrong," the company said.

Loveholidays and On the Beach recently quit the association.

Travel Republic Managing Director Antonio Fellino said it worked with insurance firm Rock to automatically added its most comprehensive Covid protection to every booking.

The policy covers bookings that are cancelled due to a positive Covid test for any member of the party due to travel up to 14 days before departure, or a hospital admission for Covid up to 28 days before departure.

Cancellations due to being denied boarding as a result of a failed temperature or medical test at the airport, and cancellation due to redundancy as a result of Covid, are also covered.

Travel Republic is also promising to refund all customers within 14 days if a package is cancelled for any reason beyond their control, while it has also introduced a price match guarantee.

Earlier this month Fellino said the agency had learned from its mistakes and was 'truly sorry' after customers were left waiting for refunds.

He said it had paid out refunds to 100,000 customers, which he likened to the 'equivalent to 20 years of cancellations and refunds in normal times'.

The agency also said customers can make amendments to their package up to seven days before departure without incurring fees from Travel Republic.

However, any increases in airfares or accommodation, or supplier change fees, will be passed on to the customer, the firm added.

"Earlier this month I was pleased to write to all Travel Republic customers to confirm that we'd cleared our refund backlog, reopened our phone lines and are now back firing on all cylinders," Fellino said. "We're confident that the Holiday Promise shows we've got their back."

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