The Consumer Protection Board (Tarbijakaitseamet) has warned of misleading offers that some travel agencies have been making whereby people book their travels for next month, without it being clear that much or all of the vacation would be spent in quarantine. One such agency is Novatours, which is offering trips for next week despite the coronavirus pandemic.
On the Novatours website (link in Estonian), you can buy a family trip to Antalya, Turkey at a top price offer and for a departure on May 2, ERR's online news in Estonian reports. However, there is no warning on the page that passengers will need to stay in two-week quarantine after arriving in Turkey.
The tour operator did not reply to a verbal contact by ERR's radio. In a written response, the company's marketing manager stated that Novatorus' trips had been suspended until May 1 as the government´s decision states. The company is saying that the offers on the website are merely there as a price indicator.
The Consumer Protection Board is asking those who can´t wait to travel to be careful. The board has received many questions where the public has been confused over whether they can buy trips.
"These could be misleading selling techniques. If a company knows that, actually, these trips can´t be taken, they shouldn´t be selling them on their website," member of the board Jaan Taal said.
"In that sense, they have broken the law if it was to come out that these trips can´t actually be made. Just as with a consumer, an entrepreneur has the obligation to check if these trips they are offering can actually be fulfilled and what the conditions in Turkey or Greece are at the moment."
Turkey´s Ministry of Tourism has stated that the emergency is thought to be due to be lifted in that country in in July, but this is only speculation, Tael confirmed. This is why he suggests making sure whether you can travel to this region beforehand.
According to another agency, the main focus for companies in the sector is still on rescheduling spring reservations and refunding money. Domestic tourism is also an option.
"It will not end soon," GoTravel manager Tiit Pruuli said.
"At the moment, we are working on figuring out what to offer within Estonia. It is not an activity that would make a profit, but, well, it has a nourishing effect on the Estonian economy, the effect of," Pruuli added.
Editor: Roberta Vaino