Common mistake could be stopping you from getting refund on your TUI holiday – here's how to get your money back | The Sun

Common mistake could be stopping you from getting refund on your TUI holiday – here's how to get your money back | The Sun


IF your TUI holiday has been delayed or cancelled, you could be entitled to a refund and compensation.

But a simple mistake when filling out the forms could mean your claim is repeatedly rejected.

It seems nonsensical, but travellers with double-barrelled surnames actually need to spell their names wrong in order to qualify for the cash.

Your passport might feature a hyphen between the two words, but to receive the money you're entitled to, this must be removed.

One mum, whose trip to and from Corfu was delayed by 24 hours, was told she could claim £350 per person in compensation.

But every time she completed the paperwork, her application was declined.


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Eventually she spotted that the boarding pass belonging to her daughter, who shares her mum and dad's surnames, was printed as one word – despite booking the holiday with the correct formatting.

So she input the youngster's surname in the same way as on the form and miraculously it was processed straight away.

TUI has confirmed this is standard procedure, but nowhere in the instructions does it make this clear.

Only in the small print on the rejection emails does it say: "Please double check the spelling of your name, date of birth and TUI booking reference – this should match your booking confirmation exactly.

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"Please do not include any special characters (- ') or include any middle names, as these details must match our manifest exactly."

A TUI spokesperson told The Sun: "Our team have looked into this and confirmed that names need to be added without the hyphen."

The mum, who was travelling from Doncaster Sheffield Airport, now wants to urge other families to follow her advice to force the holiday giant to cough up what its customers deserve.

She said: "There is a very small part of the rejection email that says don't include any special characters but this should be made a lot clearer.

"At first none of us were recognised but I saw on Facebook to just keep submitting the forms.

"Eventually my parents and us were found and compensation was granted, but my daughter wasn't found.

"I asked her if she still had her return boarding card and noticed her surname was all one word, so I resubmitted it and eventually she was recognised. 

"I booked the holiday with the correct spelling of her surname as it appears on her passport. 

"If I'd have spelled it the way TUI did she would have probably been denied boarding or been charged to change her name."

Holidaymakers have been hit by months of travel chaos, with widespread delays and cancellations.

The disruption worsened in the last two weeks due to the rise in demand sparked by half-term and the Platinum Jubilee weekend.

EasyJet has already cancelled 600 flights this month, while TUI has been forced to call off more than 180 in June.

And Gatwick Airport today axed 4,000 flights over the summer.

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The aviation industry has blamed staff shortages, increased passenger numbers and Covid.

Delayed short-haul passengers could be entitled to up to £220 compensation, while those on medium or longer-haul flights could receive £350 or £520.

How do I claim a refund or compensation?

Citizens Advice says you need to claim through your airline to get compensation – and each airline is likely to have a different application process for this.

Visit your airline's website for more information, or give them a call.

Most passengers will be protected by what's called Denied Boarding regulations.

This means that you have to be offered either a full refund for a cancelled flight or a seat on the next possible flight, or another one at a better time.

You have to be catered for if you're left waiting a while between the cancelled flight and your new one too.

So if you've got an overnight stay between the reimbursed flight and the time of cancellation, then you'll get meals, accommodation and transfers provided for the inconvenience.

But you could also be in line for compensation.

If you're flying out of the UK, you're legally entitled to compensation once your arrival is delayed by three hours or more.

Usually if passengers are given less than two weeks' notice that their flight is cancelled, they are also eligible for compensation.

But exactly how much you get under EU compensation rules depends on when the airline told you about the delay.

The very least you can claim is £220 – but the maximum is £520 if you've been booked for a longer distance flight.

If you're not happy with an airlines' response to your compensation claim, you can take it to the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR) within 12 months of the flight.

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