Wednesday 6 July 2011

Car hire companies will have to be more upfront about extra charges

The Daily Mail has run a story this week "Crackdowns over hidden car hire charges will protect travellers on holiday abroad" - Last week, the European Parliament imposed a ban on travel companies charging excessive credit and debit card charges by 2014, which was upheld by the OFT.

On the 28th June the OFT (Uk's Office of Fair Trading) issued a Press Release "OFT to take action over passenger travel sector payment surcharges"

They said "The OFT considers that surcharging for using a credit or debit card is potentially misleading to consumers when it comes as a surprise - particularly when free payment mechanisms are only available to a small proportion of consumers, making a surcharge effectively compulsory.

To make headline prices truly meaningful and comparable, the OFT is calling for traders to stop charging for paying with any debit card - the online equivalent to cash. Traders should still be able to impose surcharges for other payment mechanisms such as credit cards, which can be more costly to process, provided that they meet the minimum transparency requirements set out by the OFT in today's report."

The OFT report says: ‘Consumers were often tired after flights or in a rush to start holidays so were keen to collect their car and, as a result, were more likely to accept the terms without assessing them fully.’

To read the Daily Mail article in full Click Here

To read the OFT Press Release in full Click Here

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