Villa Parade rival hits out as travel firm goes bust

Huddersfield-based Villa Parade folded last night following a legal dispute with rival Travelopo

Villa Parade

A rival travel agent has accused Villa Parade of failing to pay the landlords of Majorca villa which the company rented to holidaymakers.

Huddersfield-based Villa Parade folded last night following a legal dispute with rival Travelopo.

Travelopo has now claimed villa owners on the Balearic island had come to the company 'in desperation' after Villa Parade had left them out of pocket.

In a statement on its website today, Travelopo said: "The landlords allege that Villa Parade has not paid them for more than a year and this is causing huge financial hardship. They were forced to stop dealing with Villa Parade...

"In desperation, the landlords asked Travelopo (via their local representative Business Resorts), to assist them to warn the holidaymakers that their bookings might not be valid and to try to stop Villa Parade from advertising their properties."

Travelopo also made other accusations and criticised holiday insurer ABTA for not taking action.

The statement continues: "...because their villas were still being sold by Villa Parade, this caused confusion. There were a number of instances where Villa Parade failed to warn their customers that they could not get access to the villa that had been sold to them. This has caused lots of local problems including the involvement of the local police. The landlords asked ABTA to take action, but without success."

Office of villaparade.com in Huddersfield
Office of Villa Parade in Huddersfield
 

Travelopo also defended contacting Villa Parade customers - allegedly using Villa Parade's contact details.

The company said: "In April 2014, Travelopo decided to notify holidaymakers to warn them that they may have a problem with their planned holiday.

"There was a dispute between Travelopo and Villa Parade about whether Travelopo was entitled to use the contact information of the affected holidaymakers.

"There was also a dispute about the contents of Travelopo’s emails.

"As a result of Travelopo’s emails, Villa Parade obtained an injunction from the High Court against Travelopo. Travelopo was not given any warning about this hearing and we did not have the chance to be represented."

ABTA, which struck off Travelopo from its register in March, said its lawyers were combing through Travelopo's statement.

Earlier we reported how a director of Villa Parade said the firm has been 'fatally wounded' by Travelopo.

ABTA is setting up a special "travel clinic" to advise many of the holidaymakers who have paid out for flights or holidays.

The company has spent years renting out villas, mainly in Spain and Portugal.

ABTA say there around 1,300  bookings for future holidays with villa accommodation only.

What ABTA say

Any customers who have booked this type of arrangement directly with Air Parade Ltd can get all the information to make a claim by going to ABTA's Travel Clinic and a refund for the villa accommodation will be arranged.

The watchdog says there are around 400 forward bookings for flight-packages that will be protected by its ATOL cover.

Any customers who have booked this type of arrangement should contact the CAA on  020 7453 6350  or visit  www.atol.org.uk . 

In addition there are around 300 forward bookings where Air Parade provided the accommodation via another company.

Customers should contact the company they used to book the accommodation and they will be looked after by that company, who will either advise that their holiday can go ahead, arrange an alternative booking, or arrange a refund.

In a small number of bookings Air Parade was acting as an agent for other travel providers.

Any customer who made a booking through Air Parade but whose accommodation or travel is being supplied by another company (the travel provider) should contact the travel provider in the first instance.

Click here to be taken to the ABTA website.

Villa Parade villa and travel firm based in Huddersfield goes bust - click to read

I am very sorry: Villa Parade director apologises and blames rival travel firm for 'fatal wound' as business goes bust - click here to read

Villa Parade customers react to the news of collapse of travel agent - click here to read

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