Lastminute.com faces legal action unless it pays outstanding refunds

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Holiday service provider, Lastminute.com is set to face legal action unless it repays over £1m to customers it committed to refund after their package holidays were cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In December, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) announced that Lastminute.com had signed formal undertakings which committed it to pay out over £7m to more than 9,000 customers when their holidays were cancelled due to the pandemic.

All those affected were due to get their money back by 31 January 2021 at the latest, however, Lastminute.com still owes over £1m to 2,600 customers.

Last week, the firm announced that the process was ‘complex’.

The company has also failed to meet its ongoing commitment to repay all customers entitled to a refund within 14 days of their package holiday being cancelled on or after December 3 2020.

The CMA has informed Lastminute.com that it will take court action if it does not repay the outstanding refunds within seven days.

To avoid court action, Lastminute.com must also ensure that customers who book their package holidays from now on will receive a full refund within 14 days where they are legally entitled to their money back following the cancellation of their package holiday.

Andrea Coscelli, Chief Executive of the CMA, said: “It is wholly unacceptable that thousands of Lastminute.com customers are still waiting for full refunds for package holidays despite the commitments the company signed with us. We take breaches of commitments extremely seriously. If Lastminute.com does not comply with the law and pay people their outstanding refunds quickly, we will take the company to court.”

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