Great Britain

Holidaymakers ‘left out of pocket’ and ‘forced to sleep on beaches’ after arriving at ‘padlocked’ Spanish hotels

HOLIDAYMAKERS say they've been left hundreds of pounds out of pocket after arriving at "padlocked" Spanish hotels.

One mum says she was so concerned her son would have to "sleep on the beach" she ended up shelling out an additional £600 for an apartment after already paying £1,500 for a hotel that ended up being closed.

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These are just some of the tales Which? says it's been told by frustrated Loveholidays customers on their first trips abroad after lockdown.

It comes as English holidaymakers can now fly to 73 countries, including Spain and France, without needing to quarantine on their return.

But it seems things haven't gone as smoothly as hoped.

Paul Davis told the consumer organisation that the gates of the hotel he was due to stay in Salou, Spain with his partner and 10-year-old son were padlocked when he arrived last weekend.

"We walked over to the hotel and I was at reception and it was all shut. So we thought maybe we got the wrong hotel," said Paul.

"So we walked around the back of the hotel and there were gates with chains and padlocks on. We looked inside the hotel and there were letters on the floor that hadn't been opened for a while."

Paul ended up shelling out £250 to check his family into another hotel after failing to get through to Loveholidays.

He says it was only a day later when Loveholidays confirmed it had moved his reservation to a different hotel in the town.

Loveholidays told Which? it hadn't been informed of the hotel's closure.

In a similar case, Antonia Lorenzo says Loveholidays failed to provide alternative accommodation for son Lewis and his friends after they discovered their hotel in Magaluf was closed.

Antonia says she was left with no choice but to shell out for another apartment the night before the boys' trip.

She told Which?: "We had to book something or my son could have ended up sleeping on the beach."

Holidaymaker Sammy Liperis was also left shocked when he arrived at his pre-booked all-inclusive, four-star hotel in the Canary Islands to find it closed.

This is despite Loveholidays staff assuring him when he and his family arrived at the airport that it would be open.

Unable to reach Loveholidays Sammy shelled out for an alternative hotel. When he finally got through the holiday company the next day, he says it could only move him to a nearby two-star hotel and that he's not had any compensation.

If you booked a package trip and the hotel is closed when you arrived, your holiday company is legally obliged to resolve the issue.

This could include arranging alternative accommodation or a full or partial refund.

If you do have to pay out for anything, keep your receipts and submit a formal complaint to your holiday provider as soon as you can. Don't expect to be covered for staying a five-star hotel though, if you'd only booked a two-star accommodation.

A Loveholidays spokesperson said: "We are working closely with all our suppliers to understand which hotels are open for customers but unfortunately some closures were not communicated to us prior to customers travelling to those hotels. 

"We wholeheartedly apologise to the affected customers for the inconvenience and distress this has caused. Our customer services team is in contact with them to resolve matters to their satisfaction and ensure that they can enjoy the rest of their holidays."

Spain locks down region with 400,000 people after surge in coronavirus cases as Brits prepare to jet off on holiday

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