Local people who have had their holidays cancelled due to the pandemic are still waiting for refunds which could tot up to £1.4 million across Moray.
Now MSP Richard Lochhead has demanded action following the latest estimations from Which?
Customers across the UK are waiting on more than £1 billion in refunds according to the results of the survey of more than 7,500 people who had a package holiday cancelled as a result of the pandemic.
Expressed a proportion of population, the findings of the survey suggest that holidaymakers in Moray could be owed more than £1.4 million.
Holiday companies are required to refund money within 14 days but the huge number of cancellations has left many of firms overwhelmed. 21% of those surveyed who requested a refund in March were still waiting at the beginning of October.
The research also found that the average cost of a cancelled holiday was £1,784.
During the summer, the Competition and Markets Authority launched an investigation into package travel companies’ handling of cancellations and refunds.
Commenting on the figures, Richard Lochhead said: “For many people, this saga has rumbled on for far too long – it’s time for the UK government and the market regulator to get a hold of this situation.
“Times are tough financially for many local families, and while I appreciate holiday companies were inundated with refund requests earlier in the year, we are now in November.
“We aren’t talking about spare change here – the average cost of a cancelled holiday was £1,784 according to this survey.
“While we all recognise the travel industry’s acute financial difficulties, there can be no excuse for them hoarding the hard-earned cash of their hard-pressed customers.
“I would urge anyone in Moray who is still waiting on a refund from March to get in touch with my office – I will offer any support I can to make sure you get your money back.”