Office Update & Coronavirus – 4 August, 2020
Information for Destination International Holidays Clients.
We hope you are all staying well and safe. Destination International Holidays wants to thank all our customers for your support and understanding during these trying times. We are working hard to reach out to all of you as quickly as possible and will continue to assist with your travel plans.
Sincere thanks to clients that continue booking for 2021 and we have also launched our Down Under Deals with many great Aussie & New Zealand holidays now available. So when the time is right and you’re ready to travel, make sure you browse our website to see the incredible selection of travel experiences that we can offer overseas and closer to home.
If you are holding a booking for 2020, please see our below answers to frequently asked questions about upcoming travel arrangements.
To speak to a travel consultant, please see the following details of how to contact us while our office is closed due to the Melbourne lockdown.
We thank all of our customers for your valued support and kind words of encouragement that we’ve received during these tough times.
You mean the world to us!
Destination International Holidays Management & Team
Bookings Being Actioned in Date Order
We are now actioning reservations for travel up until December 2020.
Due to the high volume of requests and complexities with re-booking each reservation, your consultant will be in touch in order of departure dates.
We understand customers are eager to receive updates on their holiday. You can email your travel consultant at any time and we will be pleased to share whatever news we have available.
We thank you again for your understanding while our team is working extremely hard to reach out to all of our travellers with future bookings as soon as possible.
Our team is available between 9.30 am and 4.30 pm Monday to Friday.
The office in Kew is temporarily closed and during the Melbourne lockdown period email is the best way to reach your consultant (see below).
How to Contact Your Travel Consultant
Due to the sheer number of reservations we are carefully re-booking, the best form of contact is via email.
If you know the name of your travel consultant, you can contact them as follows:
Karen – phone 0499 921 609, email [email protected]
Dave – phone 0499 902 064, email [email protected]
Mark – phone 0459 097 162, email [email protected]
Cati – phone 0418 556 565, email [email protected]
Laura – phone 0499 927 954, email [email protected]
Leanne – phone 0437 851 966, email [email protected]
If you don’t know which consultant is looking after your booking, please email [email protected] and one of our staff will be in contact.
Our team is working on a part-time roster and some staff will be taking annual leave until travel restrictions are lifted.
If you have not heard from your consultant within 3 business days, please send a friendly reminder email to [email protected] and she will follow up for you as soon as possible.
Future Travel Credits
Some airlines, tour companies and cruise lines are not refunding money. They are offering a Future Travel Credit. These travel credits are to be used for your travel services in 2021 and 2022. Conditions do apply and these will be explained to you by your travel consultant. Destination International Holidays has no control over the usage and supply of these travel credits. Please email your travel consultant about any future travel credits pertaining to your booking.
Where refunds are possible, we will need confirmation in writing from you that you wish to cancel your travel reservations. Once your notification is received we will commence the complex refund process.
Currently refunds are taking 16 to 20 weeks. We apologise, but have no control over this time frame as it is impacted by supplier processes and the sheer volume of refunds being requested at this time. Once the money has been refunded by the ultimate travel providers, as in the airlines, cruise lines, tour operators and hotels, we will contact you. At this time we will ask you for your bank account details and then refund the amount received by Destination International Holidays, less any cancellation fees. We cannot make any refunds or partial refunds until the money has been received by our agency.
Facts on refunds from the Australian Federation of Travel Agents
Destination International Holidays is a member of the Australian Federation of Travel Agents (AFTA) and a registered ATAS agent. ATAS is a national accreditation scheme which endorses travel agencies who have met strict financial and customer service criteria.
ATAS accreditation requires us to process all client funds via a Travel Trust account. Any booking payment is deposited to the trust account, then paid promptly and directly to our suppliers to confirm your reservations. We only deal with reputable airlines and accredited overseas companies that also operate travel trust accounts.
See why travel credits are being offered rather than refunds
This video gives a great explanation of how the travel industry works. It also helps travellers understand why credits are being offered rather than refunds in most cases or why a refund is taking longer to process.
Travel Insurance Claims
Please contact your travel insurance company first to see if they will allow you to make a claim based on a COVID-19 travel period cancellation. It’s important that you call the insurance company directly and they will be able to let you know what information is required to submit a claim.
Destination International Holidays can assist with the preparation of a claim letter only if you originally paid for your travel arrangements directly to our company. If you paid for your travel services elsewhere, you will need to contact that company to provide the claim letter for you.
In all cases, you will need to call your travel insurance company first to confirm if you are covered.
Our office cannot write a claim letter for our direct clients based on insurance company websites. It is important that you get very clear instructions from your insurance provider over the phone to make the claim. This step is essential in any travel insurance claim.
Any fees you are charged, or any other loss you may have experienced, should be pursued under your travel insurance. Even if you have been denied a claim, you can escalate the matter as a complaint to the insurer. If this fails, a complaint can also be lodged with the Australian Financial Complaint Authority (AFCA). As the Insurance Council of Australia has declared the pandemic a ‘catastrophe’ a special team has been set up by AFCA to review insurance policies with a lens of ‘fairness’.