Titshall v Qwerty Travel Ltd
Harold Stock & Co act for Mr Titshall, in a Personal Injury claim against Qwerty Travel Ltd due to him sustaining serious injury when a glass patio door in his hotel room shattered, whilst he was holidaying in Corfu during 2006.
Qwerty Travel Ltd denied fault for Mr Titshalls accident on the basis that they were only acting as an agent and that Mr Titshall had not booked a package holiday. Therefore, they contended that he had no right to claim under the Package Travel, Package Holiday and Package Tours Regulations 1992.
Mr Titshall had actually called a telephone number through teletext and subsequently booked his holiday, although his flight was with one company and his accommodation with another.
At an initial Court hearing at Dartford County Court, the District Judge found in favour of Qwerty Travel Ltd ruling that they had not provided a package holiday and that they merely acted as an agent for the two companies providing the flights and accommodation.
Harold Stock & Co (on Mr Titshall’s behalf) appealed this decision to the Court of Appeal.
In a unanimous decision between Lord Justice Longmore, Lord Justice Tomlinson and Lady Justice Black, Mr Titshall’s appeal was allowed. In a victory for consumers, it was held that the travel retailer had sold Mr Titshall a package holiday within the meaning of the Package Tour Regulations and therefore, he had a right to bring his claim.
As a result of this case Travel Agents have now been advised to consider this important ruling of the Court of Appeal and ensure that when selling holidays they are careful to stipulate whether the components of the holiday are separate or whether they form a package. The significance of this being that the travel retailer would owe the consumer a higher duty of care if the holiday constitutes a package holiday.