25/02/2016 – Germany must implement the EU Package Travel Directive by the end of 2017. A first draft is currently being drawn up by the German Federal Ministry for Justice and Consumer Protection (BMJV). At the event concerning the EU Package Travel Directive, guests discussed the possible scope and consequences of the directive with legal experts Professor Ansgar Staudinger and Dietrich Kressel, who is Head of Legal Affairs at TUI.
Full harmonisation in the scope of application – margins remain in place
Prof. Dr. Staudinger indicates that the EU Package Travel Directive stipulates full harmonisation. Only in very limited cases do the member states offer any room for manoeuvre in the course of implementation.
The astonishing thing is that even the meaning of package travel has never been clearly defined. Is it a combination of transport and accommodation? Or is the term more broadly defined so that even renting a holiday home from a travel agent is subject to the directive? German legislators are given considerable scope on this point. Prof. Dr. Staudinger points out that a wide definition of package travel would leave German travel agents at a significant disadvantage compared to international competition, as it would lead to a considerable financial burden.
The directive must be implemented by the end of 2017. However, in the context of the upcoming German Bundestag elections, in effect legislators only have a few months to implement the legal harmonisation. In light of this, the BMJV has announced the draft bill for Spring 2017.