Consumer Alert: Did COVID-19 ruin your travel plans? Here’s what you need to know about refunds


HONOLULU (KHON2) – If COVID-19 cancelled your travel plans, you’re likely wondering about refunds. So what are most airlines, cruises and hotels required to do regarding those cancelled plans?

The Better Business Bureau is seeing an increase in travel refund complaints. If the Coronavirus has cancelled your vacation plans, there are certain things you can do to try to get your money back.

“What people are going to have to do is they’re going to need to look at the terms and conditions so if you bought an airline ticket or the hotel, you should have a copy of that and you need to read it because that really is going to define your process and what you can do,” said Roseann Freitas, BBB Hawaii Marketpace Manager.

Check to see if you purchased travel insurance and what it covers, some travel insurance policies may refund your cancelled trip. As far as hotels, cruises and airlines, their policies may vary.

“Right now with the airlines because everything has changed they do have to give you a refund and including the ticket price and any other fees even if it wasn’t flight disruptions out of the airlines control.”

Most cruise lines are only giving out credit for cancelled plans. Some hotel chains are loosening their cancellation policies that would normally be non-refundable.

In any case, Freitas says it’s best to check with these companies directly and be careful when you’re searching for information online.

“You could be redirected to a fake website so now you’re contacting a person via the phone or via the web that is a scammer and now they may start asking you for personal information or they may say to re-book this ticket I’ll need your credit card and all this information.”

If you have a travel complaint you can report it to the BBB or the FTC. For more information from the FTC regarding travel refunds click here.

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