Various Schemes

Hotels I

The Hotel Proprietors Act regulates certain aspects of contracts between hotels and their guests. A proprietor of a hotel is under a duty to receive as guests at the hotel all persons who present themselves and require sleeping accommodation, food or drink and to provide them therewith unless he has reasonable grounds for refusal.

Subject to the terms of any contract, the proprietor is under a duty to provide such accommodation, food or drink at the charges rate for the time being current at the hotel.

Where a person is received as a guest at a hotel, the proprietor of the hotel is under a duty to take reasonable care of the person of the guest and to ensure that the premises are as safe as reasonable care and skill can make them, for the purpose of personal use by the guest.


Hotels II

Where sleeping accommodation is provided for a guest, the hotel proprietor is obliged to receive property brought to the hotel for and on behalf of the person for which he has suitable accommodation.  The proprietor is liable for loss or damage or destruction of property received in that context. A motor car is deemed to be received when it is placed within the premises provided by the hotel for parking.

The liability applies in relation to damage and destruction which occurs during the time when the accommodation is hired or during a reasonable period before or afterwards.

The special liability does not apply to a motor vehicle or to any property left, unless the proprietor of the hotel or some employee authorised, or appearing to be authorised, for this purpose has been notified that the motor vehicle has been brought to the hotel.

The proprietor is exempted from liability to the extent that the loss or damage is due to an unforeseeable and irresistible act of nature, act of war or due to the guest himself or anyone accompanying him or visiting him.


Limitation of Liability for Damage

A hotel proprietor may limit his liability.  A proprietor may display a notice informing persons who book accommodation that its liability for guests is to be regulated by the (1963) Act, which set a ceiling for liability at £100 (c. €127). The notice must be conspicuously displayed at the reception desk.  The limitation does not apply to wrongful acts, default or omissions of the proprietor or his employees.

If goods are specifically left for safekeeping are destroyed or lost, the ceiling does not apply. The ceiling does not apply to damage or theft of the vehicle brought into the hotel property.

It is not permissible to contract out of liability created by the protections in the Act.


Transport and Telecommunications

The Transport Act 1958 gives CIE discretion in relation to the terms on which it contracts with the public and businesses. The implied terms of the Sale of Goods and Supply of Services Acts do not apply to CIE until a ministerial order is made. Following 1986 reforms, the CIE operators are Irish Rail, Bus Eireann, and Dublin Bus. The relevant enactments are adapted to refer to them.

The terms of Carriage must be compatible with the provisions of the CMR; the international convention on road transport of goods and with another EU legislation on passenger and goods transport by road.

The Postal and Telecommunications Act (continued by the Communications Regulation (Postal Services) Act) immunised An Post from liability for loss and damage arising by reason of failure or delay in providing, operating and maintaining a postal service or any failure, interruption, suspension or restriction of the service.

The implied rights in relation to the provision of services in the Sale of Goods and Supply of Services Acts do not apply to the provision of the universal postal services by the company or other provides, unless and until a ministerial order is made.


Long Distance Road Passenger Rights

EU regulation makes provision for the rights of passengers in long distance bus and coach transport.  It applies with some exceptions to passengers travelling on regular services where the boarding or alighting point is within the EU and where the scheduled distance is more than 250 kilometres. Regular services refer to services which provide for the carriage of passengers by bus or coach at specified intervals and on specific routes with passengers being picked up and set down at predetermined stopping points.

The rights applicable to long-distance services include

  • adequate assistance including snacks, meals and refreshments as necessary and up to two night’s hotel accommodation of a total of €80 per night for service failures, in cases of cancellation or following a delay of more than 90 minutes in the case of journeys of more than three hours (except in the case of severe weather conditions and natural disasters);
  • guarantee of reimbursement or rerouting in cases of overbooking or in case of cancellation or following a delay of more than 120 minutes from the estimated time of departure;
  • compensation of 50 percent of the ticket price following more than 120 minutes delay from the estimated time of departure, cancellation of the journey, and if the carrier fails to offer the passenger either rerouting or reimbursement;
  • information when the service is canceled or delayed on departure;
  • protection of passengers in the case of death, injury, loss or damage caused by road accidents, in particular, dealing with immediate practical needs including up to two nights hotel accommodation of a total amount of €80 per night;
  • specific assistance free of charge for disabled persons and persons with reduced mobility.

General Road Passenger Rights

Certain additional rights apply to all services including those less than 250 kilometres.

  • no discrimination is permitted directly or indirectly on the grounds of nationality in relation to tariffs and contract conditions for the carriage of passengers;
  • no discriminatory treatment of disabled persons and persons with reduced mobility;
  • financial compensation for loss or damage to their mobility equipment in the event of accidents’
  • minimum travel information for all passengers before joining the journey; general information about their rights at terminals and online; where feasible, information is to be provided in accessible formats upon request, in the interests of persons with reduced mobility;

A complaint handling mechanism is to be established by carriers and is to be available to all passengers.  Independent national bodies in each EU State are to be established or designated in order to enforce the regulation and where appropriate impose penalties


Sea and Inland Passenger Rights

A 2010 EU regulation provides for the rights of passengers travelling by sea and inland waterways within the EU.  It applies to passengers travelling on passenger services either departing from or arriving in an EU port and on cruises where the port of embarkation is within the EU.

It does not apply

  • to ships certified to carry up to 12 passengers;
  • ships with a crew of less than three persons where the distance is less than 500 meters;
  • on excursion or sightseeing tours;
  • on ships not propelled on mechanical means; or
  • on historical ships certified to carry up to 36 passengers.

Carriers, travel agents and tour operators must not refuse to accept reservations, issue tickets or disembark persons on the grounds of disability or reduced mobility. Tickets may not be offered to them at an additional cost.

Reservations and tickets may be refused to disabled persons or persons with reduced mobility, in order to meet applicable safety requirements and where the design of the passenger ship or port infrastructure and equipment makes the safe embarkation, disembarkation or carriage of disabled persons impossible.  In such cases, carriers and travel agents must make all reasonable efforts to find an alternative means of transport for the persons concerned.


Sea and Inland Passenger Rights on Delay or Cancellation

In the event of a cancellation or delayed departure of a passenger service, the passengers must be informed by the carrier of the situation as soon as possible, and no later than 30 minutes after the scheduled time of departure.  Carriers must also inform passengers of the estimated departure and arrival time, as soon as the information is available.

Where the departure is cancelled or delayed by more than 90 minutes, passengers must be offered free of charge, snacks, meals, and refreshments in reasonable relation to the waiting time.  Where an overnight stay is necessary, the carrier must offer, where possible free of charge accommodation for the passengers.  The carrier may limit the total cost of accommodation to €80 per night per passenger, for a maximum of three nights.

Where departure is cancelled or delayed for more than 90 minutes, passengers must immediately be offered the choice of rerouting to the final destination at the earliest opportunity at no additional cost or the reimbursement of the ticket price and where appropriate, a return service free of charge, to the first point of departure.


Additional Compensation

Passengers may also request compensation in addition to transport from the carrier, in the event of delay in arrival at the final destination.  The minimum level of compensation is 25 percent of the ticket price.

  • for a delay of at least one hour in the case of a scheduled journey of up to four hours
  • two hours in the case of a scheduled journey of up to four to eight hours;
  • three hours in the case of a scheduled journey of eight to twenty hours and
  • six hours in the case of a scheduled journey of more than twenty hours

If the delay exceeds double the time above, compensation will increase to 50 percent of the ticket price.

The compensation is to be paid either in vouchers or in money, at the request of the passenger, within one month of the request for compensation.  It must not be reduced by financial transaction costs such as fees, telephone cost, or stamps.

Carriers are not required to provide passengers with an overnight stay and compensation, where the cancellation is caused by weather conditions endangering the safe operation of the ship.


Complaint Handling Mechanisms

Carriers and terminal operators must establish and have an accessible complaint handling mechanism in respect of the above rights and obligations.  A passenger must submit a complaint within two months from the date on which the transport service was undertaken or when the service should have been undertaken.

Within one month of receiving the complaint, the carrier or terminal operator must notify the passenger that the complaint has been substantiated, rejected or is still being considered.  The final response must be provided within two months of the receipt of the complaint.

States must establish an independent national body with a mandate to enforce the regulation and impose penalties where appropriate.


References and Sources

Irish Texts

Consumer Law Rights & Regulation    Donnelly & White (2014)

Consumer Protection Act 2007 Annotated  Bird (2008)

Consumer Rights Long (2004)

Commercial & Consumer Law: Annotated Statutes O’Reilly, P (2000)

UK Texts

Consumer Sales Law: The Law Relating to Consumer Sales and Financing of Goods 3rd ed

John MacLeod, James Devenney (2019)

Electronic Consumer Contracts in the Conflict of Laws 2nd ed Zeng Sophia Tang (2018)

The Law of Consumer Redress in an Evolving Digital Market: Upgrading from Alternative to Online Dispute Resolution Pablo Cortes (2017)

Blackstone’s Statutes on Commercial & Consumer Law 2017-2018 Francis Rose

Consumer and Trading Standards: Law and Practice 2017 Bryan Lewin, Jonathan Kirk

Woodroffe and Lowe’s Consumer Law and Practice Woodroffe and Lowe’s Consumer Law and Practice 10th ed Geoffrey Woodroffe, Chris Willett, Christian Twigg-Flesner (2016)

Butterworths Trading and Consumer Law Looseleaf Annual Subscription Deborah L. Parry, Roland Rowell (2016)

Butterworths Commercial and Consumer Law Handbook 8th ed Richard B. Mawrey, Tobias Riley-Smith (2015

Consumer and Trading Standards: Law and Practice 4th ed

Legislation

Sale of Goods Act 1893 56 & 57

Sale of Goods and Supply of Services Act 1980

The 2011 Report of the Sales Law Review Group,

Consumer Protection Act 2007 19/2007

Competition and Consumer Protection Act 2014 29/2014

Orders Re Price Display (retained

Prices Act 1958.

Prices (Amendment) Act 1965

Prices (Amendment) Act1972

Orders made under Prices Acts 1958 and 1965 were carried over on repeal of the 1958 and 1965 Acts by 19/2007

Prices and Charges (Tax-inclusive Statements) Order 1973, S.I.

Charges (Hairdressing) Display Order 1976, S.I. No. 156 of 1976

Retail Prices (Food in Catering Establishments) Display Order 1984, S.I. No. 213 of 1984

Consumer Information (Advertisements) (Disclosure of Business Interest) Order 1984, S.I. No. 168 of 1984417

Consumer Information (Advertisements For Concert Or Theatre Performances) Order 1997, S.I. No. 103 of 1997

Retail Price (Diesel and Petrol) Display Order 1997, S.I. No. 178 of 1997

Retail Price (Beverages in Licensed Premises) Display Order 19/2007

Consumer Information Act Orders

Consumer Information (Advertisements For Airfares) Order 2000, S.I. No. 468 of 2000

Consumer Protection Act 2007 (Commencement) Order 2007,S.I. No. 178 of 2007

Consumer Protection Act 2007 (Establishment Day) Order 2007,S.I. No. 179 of 2007

Consumer Protection (Fixed Payment Notice) Regulations 2007,S.I. No. 689 of 2007

Consumer Protection Act 2007 (National Consumer Agency) Levy Regulations 2011, S.I. No. 560 of 2011

Consumer Protection (Consumer Information) (Articles of Precious Metals) Regulations 2012, S.I. No. 143 of 2012

Consumer Protection Act 2007 (National Consumer Agency) Levy Regulations 2012, S.I. No. 435 of 2012

Consumer Protection Act 2007 (National Consumer Agency) Levy Regulations 2013, S.I. No. 409 of 2013

Consumer Protection Act 2007 (National Consumer Agency) Levy Regulations 2014, S.I. No. 458 of 2014

Consumer Protection Act 2007 (Competition and Consumer Protection Commission) Levy Regulations 2015, S.I. No. 457 of 2015

European Communities (Cooperation Between National Authorities Responsible for the

Enforcement of Consumer Protection Laws) Regulations 2006, S.I. No. 290 of 2006 [Minister

European Communities (Cooperation Between National Authorities Responsible for the

Enforcement of Consumer Protection Laws) (Amendment) Regulations 2008, S.I. No. 316 of 2008  European Communities (Single-Member Private Limited Companies)European Communities (Protection of Consumers in Respect of Contracts made by Means of Distance Communication) (Amendment) Regulations 2010, S.I. No. 370 of 2010

European Communities (Court Orders for the Protection of Consumer Interests) Regulations 2010, S.I. No. 555 of 2010

European Union (Protection of Consumers in respect of Timeshare, Long-term Holiday Product, Resale and Exchange Contracts) Regulations 2011, S.I. No. 73 of 2011

European Communities (Cooperation between National Authorities Responsible for the Enforcement of Consumer Protection Laws) (Amendment) Regulations 2012, S.I. No. 485 of 2012 [

European Union (Public Limited Companies) (Directive 2012/ European Communities (Cooperation between National Authorities Responsible for the Enforcement of Consumer Protection Laws) (Amendment) Regulations 2013, S.I. No. 122 of 2013

European Communities (Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts) (Amendment) Regulations 2013, S.I. No. 160 of 2013

European Communities (Cooperation between National Authorities Responsible for the Enforcement of Consumer Protection Laws) (Amendment) (No. 2) Regulations 2013, S.I. No. 200 of 2013

European Union (Consumer  nformation, Cancellation and Other Rights) Regulations 2013, S.I. No. 484 of 2013

European Union (Consumer Information, Cancellation and Other Rights) (Amendment) Regulations 2014, S.I. No. 250 of 2014

European Communities (Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts) (Amendment) Regulations 2014, S.I. No. 336 of 2014

European Union (Protection of Consumers in respect of Timeshare, Long-term Holiday Product, Resale and Exchange Contracts) (Amendment) Regulations 2014

European Union (Alternative Dispute Resolution for Consumer Disputes) Regulations 2015, S.I. No. 343 of 2015

European Union (Alternative Dispute Resolution for Consumer Disputes) (No. 2) Regulations

2015, S.I. No. 368 of 2015

European Union (Traded Companies — Corporate Governance Statements) Regulations 2015, S.I. No. 423 of 2015

European Union (Online Dispute Resolution for Consumer Disputes) Regulations 2015, S.I. No. 500 of 2015

European Union (Online Dispute Resolution for Consumer Disputes) Regulations 2016, S.I. No. 32 of 2016

European Union (Consumer Information, Cancellation and Other Rights) (Amendment) Regulations 2016, S.I. No. 336 of 2016

Competition and Consumer Protection Act 2014 (Commencement) Order 2014, S.I. No. 366 of 2014

Competition and Consumer Protection Act 2014 (Establishment Day) Order 2014, S.I. No. 367 of 2014

Consumer Protection Act 2007 (Grocery Goods Undertakings) Regulations 2016, S.I. No. 35 of 2016

Consumer Protection Act 2007 (Competition and Consumer Protection Commission) Levy Regulations 2016, S.I. No. 479 of

2016

District Court (Consumer Protection Act 2007) Rules 2009, S.I. No. 106 of 2009

European Communities (Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts) Regulations 1995, S.I. No. 27 of 1995 [

European Communities (Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts) (Amendment) Regulations 2000, S.I. No. 307 of 2000

European Communities (Certain Aspects of the Sale of Consumer Goods and Associated Guarantees) Regulations 2003, S.I. No. 11 of 2003

European Communities (Protection of Consumers in Respect of Contracts Made by Means of Distance Communication) (Amendment) Regulations 2005, S.I. No. 71 of 2005

European Communities (International Financial  European Communities (Cooperation Between National Authorities Responsible for the Enforcement of Consumer Protection Laws) Regulations 2006, S.I. No. 290 of 2006

European Communities (Distance Marketing of Consumer Financial Services) Regulations 2004, S.I. No. 853 of 2004

Circuit Court Rules (Consumer Protection Act 2007) 2008, S.I. No. 585 of 2008

European Communities (Court Orders for the Protection of Consumer Interests) Regulations 2010, S.I. No. 555 of 2010

European Communities (Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts) Amendment) Regulations 2013, S.I. No. 160 of 2013

European Union (Consumer Information, Cancellation and Other Rights) Regulations 2013, S.I. No. 484 of 2013

European Union (Consumer Information, Cancellation and Other Rights) (Amendment) Regulations 2014, S.I. No. 250 of 2014

European Communities (Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts) (Amendment) Regulations 2014, S.I. No. 336 of 2014

European Union (Alternative Dispute Resolution for Consumer Disputes) Regulations 2015, S.I. No. 343 of 2015

European Union (Alternative Dispute Resolution for Consumer Disputes) (No. 2) Regulations 2015, S.I. No. 368 of 2015

European Union (Online Dispute Resolution for Consumer Disputes) Regulations 2015, S.I. No. 500 of 2015

European Union (Online Dispute Resolution for Consumer Disputes) Regulations 2016, S.I. No. 32 of 2016

European Union (Consumer Information, Cancellation and Other Rights) (Amendment) Regulations 2016, S.I. No. 336 of 2016