they waved to the announcement on Booking.com. The Codacons: «More precautions needed». Ad hoc travel policies to protect against “ghost houses”. The psychologist: “Anyone can be scammed”
The pool? Slightly deeper than a bathtub. The gym? One piece of equipment and a treadmill, under the sun. Result: ruined holidays and a refund request. Accepted, by the judge of pacAnd. It was supposed to be a vacation in the name of wellness that of FGLM, 44 year old from Milan who, in June 2018, decides for ten days of relaxation in Puglia. After a quick (too much?) Search on Booking.com our tourist thinks he has found what is right for him: a hotel in Vieste, in the Foggiano area, equipped with a spa, gym and swimming pool. On the first, nothing to object: they are the last two to turn up their noses, since they do not correspond at all to the images published on the site.
Day one: the Milanese vacationer, who had paid out 2,250 euros in advance, announces to the owner his intention to leave. Spades answer him: he can change the air, but he would lose his money. The refund would in fact only arrive in the event of a new booking of his room, in the meantime re-entered on Booking.
Day three: the tourist, exasperated, packs arms and luggage and he goes away. He sends Booking’s solomonic offer back to the sender – which he puts on the plate 1
00 euros to settle the dispute – and appeals to the judiciary to get his money back: now, after a three-year dispute, the Milan justice of the peace Alexia Dulcetta accepted his appeal and ordered the structure to reimburse the seven days already paid and not taken, in addition to the court costs.
The Codacons rejoices
A provision that made Codacons rejoice: “We are always active in protecting consumers from episodes of this type – observes the national president Marco Donzellia lawyer who represented the Milanese tourist in court – citizens must understand that when they choose the vacation package they must have the same precautions as when, for example, they decide to buy a boiler or a new car “.
The reimbursed vacationer, it must be said, went well. In fact, his dissatisfaction was “only” turned towards the quality of the service: those who, on the other hand, sometimes complain entirely of its absence are not as fortunate. This is the case of the patrons of the so-called “
ghost holiday homes
“ – those yes, real scams – the number of which is increasing in Lombardy as in the rest of Italy: at the beginning of June the investigating judge of Monza issued a precautionary custody order at home against a couple accused of duped 28 customers by selling them online, among other things, self-styled accommodation in tourist resorts. Fake ads that have prompted some insurance companies to develop special policies capable of guaranteeing vacationers: “In addition to the normal third party liability and cancellation insurance coverage, these products also protect in the event of fraud – explains Irene Giani, head of travel policies for Facile.it -. The insurance only intervenes if the rented house does not exist at all, but also if it does not conform to the description ».
The psychologist: “Few denounce”
Fraud spares no one, but the percentage of those who report is minimal: “For many it means admitting naivety, and they avoid”, comments the Dr. Gianluca Castelnuovofull professor of clinical psychology at the Cattolica and at the Italian auxological institute, who underlines how anyone can face the deception: “Often these are young and educated people – he continues – this is because sometimes the choices are dictated by the suggestion of an image, rather than by rationality. Never decide on the spot ».
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August 2, 2022 (change August 2, 2022 | 09:48)
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