In recent years, the trend of holiday companies getting into difficulties and seeing people lose a lot of money as well as their vacation arrangements has tapered off somewhat. But the unexpected can always happen and therefore protecting yourself when booking a holiday is always a good idea. The top question many people ask is how should they pay for their holiday?
For most companies, a deposit payment is needed to secure the holiday, a little like buying a car or a new kitchen. Holiday companies don’t work like bingo websites where you can play free with no deposit, rather some cash is needed to ensure you get the deal you want. If you back out, then you may lose this deposit.
You can get companies who offer a low deposit, if paying a big amount upfront is an issue for you. In these deals, you pay an initial deposit then around two months later, you make a further payment that brings the amount paid up to the normal deposit. However, if you cancel the holiday, you will likely need to pay the remainder of the deposit if you haven’t already done so.
Paying the balance
When the time comes to pay the balance after the deposit or if you decide to pay the amount totally upfront, how should you pay? At one time, cash would be an option but a card is now recognised as the safest option and a credit card may have additional benefits.
Most companies charge for credit cards, around 2.5% but by using this card, you are covered under various consumer credit legislations that come into effect when you pay more than a particularly minimum with your card. This means should the worst happen and your travel company should get into difficulties, you can claim back the money paid from your credit card company.
On the other hand, if you are secure in your trust of the travel company, then you can save yourself that 2.5% by paying with a debit card. Some debit card operators even offer a similar system of protection to the credit card companies, so check with your bank beforehand.
Try to avoid paying by cash, cheque or bank transfer unless unavoidable because if anything goes wrong, you have no protection at all. And anything being sent through the post is a little risky, so aim for a company who transacts over the internet.