Any person with a business permit for commercial activities can offer travellers:
- an associated travel arrangement;
- package holiday or a holiday stay.
The professional must fulfil certain obligations in terms of providing pre-contractual information to the traveller. They must also remember to take out an insolvency insurance and guarantee the repatriation of the traveller where needed.
In terms of their organisation, both package holidays and associated travel arrangements are categorised as holiday-related services. Those services include:
- the transportation of passengers;
- accommodation which:
- is not included in the transportation;
- does not have a residential purpose;
- car rentals (category-B driver's licence) or motorcycle rentals (category-A driver's licence);
- any other tourism-related services that are an essential characteristic of the traveller's trip.
The choice of whether to provide travel services in the form of associated travel arrangements or package holidays depends on the business model that the professional wishes to adopt, and on the responsibilities they are willing to assume.
In the case of associated travel arrangements, the professional is responsible only for those services that they undertake to offer.
In the case of a package holiday, the professional is responsible for all of the services included in the package.
Who is concerned
Providers of associated travel arrangements
Associated travel arrangements may be provided by any legal or natural person wishing to sell travel services in connection with an existing travel arrangement booked within the previous 24 hours.
The first professional must have facilitated the purchase of a second travel service from another professional at the former's point of sale, or simply by contacting them.
Each professional charges the traveller only for those travel services they will be providing.
The offered services also concern the second professional if the latter offers a travel service that complements a travel package within 24 hours of the confirmation of that travel package.
In this case, as well, each professional charges the traveller only for those services that they will be providing.
These conditions do not apply to:
- trips lasting less than 24 hours, unless an overnight stay is included in the trip;
- trips organised on an occasional and not-for-profit basis for a limited group of travellers;
- business trips.
Professionals who offer associated travel arrangements must take out insurance against insolvency and repatriation, covering:
- all payments made by travellers or on their behalf;
- any services that have not yet been provided due to insolvency;
- the estimated costs of repatriation.
Professionals providing these services must present the Ministry of the Economy with a certificate proving that they are insured against insolvency and repatriation. The form of said certificate is free. However, the following information must be included:
- their corporate name;
- their trade name if they have one;
- the address of their head office;
- the phone number and address where the insurer/guarantor can be reached;
- the insurer/guarantor's identification number (e.g. Luxembourg business identification (R.C.S.) number, national identification number);
- the maximum amount of risk coverage;
- the expiry date of said coverage.
Natural or legal persons who wish to trade in package holidays must first obtain a business permit for commercial activities.
Traders must also hold a business permit for commercial activities.
Applicants must enclose the certificate of insurance against insolvency and repatriation with their application.
Persons who already hold a business permit for commercial activities and who wish to undertake a commercial activity specialised in travel services must submit their certificate of insurance against insolvency and repatriation to the Ministry of the Economy at their own initiative.
How to proceed
Obligations of associated travel arrangement service providers
Compulsory information to be included in the offer
The professional must inform the traveller by means of a standardised form. This information must be:
The professional must provide the following information to the traveller:
- whether the purchase falls into the category of an associated travel arrangement;
- that the rights and entitlements applicable to package holidays do not apply;
- that they are only responsible for the proper provision of their own service, and not responsible for the proper provision of the services of other providers;
- that in the event of a problem regarding the provision of a service included in an associated travel arrangement which is not their responsibility, the traveller must contact the appropriate provider;
- whether the service is covered by the insolvency and repatriation guarantee;
- the identity of the organisation providing protection against insolvency and repatriation;
- the contact details of the organisation providing protection against insolvency and repatriation.
The form is not a table with checkboxes. The form is a standardised information list with sentences to be adapted according to the identity of the parties to the contract and the identity of the travel guarantor.
The organiser can find these forms in the Consumer law code, in the regulatory section from section VI.
Modification of the clauses in the service provision contract, and termination
If the service provider modifies or terminates the associated travel arrangement contract, they must fulfil the general obligations provided for in the Consumer Code.
Provider's responsibility for the provision of the associated travel arrangement service(s)
Unlike the organiser of the package holiday, the service provider is responsible only for the proper provision of their own service.
The flight provider is not responsible for the actions of the car rental provider. Only the car rental provider is responsible for the non-compliance of the rented vehicle.
Recourse against the consumer
If the traveller violates their contractual obligations, the organiser can take action against the traveller in the same way as any other consumer.
In such cases, the matter must be brought before the competent civil court with jurisdiction for the consumer's place of residence.
In Luxembourg, this may be:
The applicable law is that of the country where the consumer is normally resident.