Angry Thai tourists want tour refunds
Some 67 Thai tourists filed complaints with the Tourism Department, asking tour operators to provide them with refunds of 1.4 million baht in total after entry into South Korea was denied.
Jaturon Phakdeewanit of the Tourism Department said only two holidaymakers purchased their tours directly from a big company, while the remainder made transactions with 15 retail companies.
The initial investigation indicated that three of the companies were unlicensed, while one tour firm did not appear in any type of business registration.
After receiving complaints between Aug 5-17, the department found that most of the tourists said they did not receive a refund of their tour package despite not being able to make the trip due to denial of entry, or the tour companies confiscated a 10,000-baht deposit which was meant to be a guarantee that the tourists would not seek to work illegally on their arrival.
Mr Jaturon said the tour companies must be responsible for a refund after deducting all necessary costs.
However, if there are additional expenditures resulting from the alteration of flights, or tour companies had to allocate new return flights after being denied entry at immigration, operators can deduct the airfare from the package before refunding the customers.
Mr Jaturon said that the cost of the return flights, which must be arranged immediately, would usually be more expensive than advance bookings.
The Thai Travel Agents Association said outbound package sales to South Korea had dropped dramatically over the past week after more tourists were unable to receive refunds from tour companies.
- advance: before the time that is expected; before something happens - ล่วงหน้า
- confiscate: to take away - ยึด
- deduct: to take away an amount or part from a total - หักออก
- denial: a refusal to allow somebody to have something - การปฎิเสธ, การไม่ยอมรับ
- dramatically: in a big way - อย่างใหญ่หลวง
- expenditure: money spent by a government, organization, or person - การใช้จ่าย (เงิน)
- guarantee (noun): a promise or certainty that something is correct, will be done or will happen - คำรับรอง, การประกัน
- purchase: to buy something - ซื้อ
- refund: a reimbursement; an amount of money that is given back to you - เงินที่คืนให้
- registration: the process of recording names or information on an official list - การขึ้นทะเบียน, การลงทะเบียน
- responsible for: to have a duty to do something - มีความรับผิดชอบ
- unlicensed: not having a license or the correct papers to do something - ไม่ได้ตีทะเบียน, นอกกฎหมาย