Who can claim?
a) ceased trading or collapsed, or
b) failed to pass on your money for travel arrangements to the travel service provider, ie the airline, accommodation provider, etc.
You can submit a claim to the Fund if you have suffered a financial loss because an Australian Travel Agent has failed to account for money you paid for travel arrangements and the loss is not covered by your travel insurance.
You are referred to as a ‘claimant ‘.
Have you lost money to an Australian Licensed Travel Agent?
You can find out whether a travel agent is licensed by searching the ‘Australian Travel Agent Search’ (to the left of your screen ) or by contacting the licensing authority in your State. (See Links to Other Sites)
The Fund does not cover the financial loss caused by the non-performance of a travel service principal such as and airline, coach operator, hotel or car rental agency.
What if my travel agent was unlicensed at the time I made a payment?
The Fund may compensate you but is not obliged to do so. These are discretionary claims under Clause 15.2 of the TCF Trust Deed. There are a number of considerations that the Fund takes into account in deciding whether to pay such a claim. The TCF has published a guideline dealing with unlicensed trading claims.
Click here to download the Unlicensed Claim Guideline No.2.
Have you paid by Credit Card?
If your travel and accommodation package was paid for in full, or in part, by a credit you must immediately try to recover your funds by exercising your rights as the card holder. Here are some key points to be aware of.
- In general credit card providers will refund any money you have paid by credit card to a merchant (i.e. a travel agent) that has failed to provide the products or services you paid for.
- In some cases insurance attached to a credit card will provide cover for losses of amounts paid for products and services that were not provided.
- If you paid for any of your travel services by credit card and wish to make a compensation claim to the TCF, you must first seek reimbursement from your credit card provider, or claim any insurance attached to your card.
- Information on how to do this is provided by the issuer of your card and may appear on your monthly credit card statement.
- Card issuers may apply strict time limits so you should attend to your card reimbursement or insurance claim immediately.
- If a credit card provider refunds all your money then the TCF cannot compensate you as you have not suffered a loss. If the credit card provider refuses to pay your claim, or part of your claim, you may then be able to claim from us. Importantly, however, you must provide the original letter of refusal by your credit card provider for your claim to be assessed.
How to claim?
You will need to carefully complete the ‘Claim For Compensation’ form and provide all required supporting documentation.
What can I claim for?
You are entitled to claim up to the $25,000 ceiling for the full amount paid to the failed agent, and which was not paid to the service provider or not refunded to you.
What happens to the part of my claim that exceeds the $25,000 ceiling?
The TCF has a discretion to apy an above-ceiling claim but is not obliged to do so. The TCF has published a Guideline setting out the matters taken into account in paying an above-ceiling claim.
Click here to download the Above-Ceiling Claims Guideline No. 3.