Package travel to France: what do you need to check?

For your stay in France, you want to opt for a package travel (a set of services offered at a price fixed by a tour operator). Learn more about the consumer protection rules which apply.


A package tour consists of a combination of at least two touristic services such as transport (flight, train, etc.) + accommodation (hotel, B&B, etc.) or accommodation + one or more other significant tourist services (excursion, sports event, etc.) (worth at least 25% of the price of the tour or constituting an essential element of the tour).

To benefit from the rights arising from a travel package during the Rugby World Cup or the Olympic or Paralympic Games, these services must have been booked with the same trader (e.g. travel agency) or in several steps online but you were redirected to partner websites. More information in our article on package travel.

The travel agency must inform you about :

  • the main characteristics of the trip (dates, destination, itinerary, number of nights, transport, accommodation, meals, visits, accessibility for people with reduced mobility, size of the group, language used),
  • the organiser’s business name and address,
  • the total price including taxes and all fees,
  • the terms of payment,
  • the minimum number of participants required for the trip,
  • the applicable passport, visa and health requirements,
  • the conditions for terminating the contract,
  • mandatory and optional insurance.

The travel agency must provide you with a copy or confirmation of the contract. Don't forget to print and/or keep it for your records.

The contract must show:

  • the main characteristics of the trip (destination, itinerary, dates, number of nights, transport, accommodation, meals, visits, accessibility for people with reduced mobility, size of the group, language used),
  • the organiser’s business name and address,
  • the contact details of the local representative,
  • the total price including taxes and all fees,
  • the terms of payment,
  • the  minimum number of participants required for the trip,
  • the applicable passport and visa requirements,
  • the conditions for terminating the contract,
  • mandatory and optional insurance,
  • special requirements of the traveller,
  • the travel agency’s responsibility for the proper performance of all services,
  • the names and contact details of the insolvency protection entity and the trader's local representative,
  • a statement on the communication of any non-conformity,
  • contact information for unaccompanied minors,
  • internal complaint procedures,
  • information on the traveller's right to transfer their contract to another traveller.

The price of the journey can only be increased if the contract expressly provides for this. The contract must provide for the possibility of a price increase or reduction and the method of calculating this revision.

Price increases are only possible to take account of the following variations

  • transport costs (linked to the cost of fuel),
  • fees and taxes (landing, embarkation and disembarkation, tourist taxes),
  • exchange rates.

The increase must not exceed 8% of the total cost. If it does, you have the right to cancel the contract free of charge and be reimbursed in full for the sums paid.

The professional must inform you, justifying the increase, at least 20 days before the start of the trip.

To find out the conditions for changing the trip, you should read the general conditions of your contract.

Before departure

If the agency modifies the trip (dates, change of itinerary, significant price increase), you can cancel your contract without charge if the modifications are significant. You can then obtain a refund of the sums paid. You can also accept the proposed change by signing an amendment that includes the validated changes and their possible impact on the price.

After departure

If the changes take place after departure, the trader must offer you alternative services at no extra cost (unless this is impossible or would involve disproportionate costs) or reimburse you for the services not provided.

If the agency cancels the trip, it must reimburse you in full. In some cases (except in cases of force majeure) you can also claim compensation at least equal to the penalty you would have had to pay if you had cancelled yourself.

If you took out cancellation insurance when you bought your trip, refer to the contract to see if your situation is covered by this insurance.

Yes, if you can no longer travel for personal reasons, you can request a cancellation of your trip, but there will be a penalty fee. This fee should be appropriate and justifiable by the trader. The contract may provide for a reasonable standard fee depending on the date of cancellation prior to travel.

If you have taken out cancellation insurance, check whether the reason for cancellation is covered by your insurance.

You may cancel the trip free of charge in the event of exceptional and unavoidable circumstances at your destination (e.g. hotel closure).

Please note that there is no right of withdrawal on package holidays, even when purchased online.


Yes, you can transfer your contract to a person who meets the same conditions as you.

You must inform the seller at least 7 days before the start of the trip. A fee may be charged for this change, but it must be justified and not unreasonable.

  • If there is a problem before departure, contact the seller of the trip (the travel agency, the website, the airline, etc.) or the organiser (tour operator, travel agency, a service provider, etc.) to try to resolve your dispute.
  • If the services provided do not correspond to what you were sold, gather evidence (testimonials, photos, printed material, etc.) and inform the travel agency as soon as possible. It must try to remedy the situation. If not, you can also ask for a price reduction and damages.
  • If the problem encountered significantly disrupts your trip, you can cancel your contract without paying any fees and claim a price reduction and damages.

Any trader selling travel packages in the European Union must insure against insolvency with an EU-based financial institution in order to be able to reimburse the consumer or repatriate him/her in the event of bankruptcy.

In the event of repatriation, the guarantee should also cover the financing of accommodation (maximum 3 nights) pending repatriation.

Contact the guarantor directly (whose details must be given in your contract) to activate your right to travel or to be reimbursed.

Good to know:

  • Travel agencies operating in France must be registered. Registration is granted if they can prove that they have a financial guarantee against insolvency and civil liability insurance. To check the registration, consult Atout France.
  • Japanese travel businesses require registration with the national and local governments. The registration category varies depending on the scope of work. Under the Travel Act, package tours are classified as” ready-made” trips (overseas), requiring registration as a Type 1 travel business. Also travel agents are to deposit a certain amount so that in the event of a default by a travel agent, a traveler can receive refund of the travel fee from the business deposit. Otherwise, it is also possible that businesses use a Security Deposit System for Repayment Services implemented by industry groups to reduce the burden of the above security deposit for travel agencies. Businesses affiliated with the organization pay 1/5 of the equivalent amount of the security deposit, and the remaining 4/5 is jointly guaranteed among the members.

If the organiser of your trip in France is established in a country outside the EU, it must have a guarantee in the event of insolvency, as must agencies in France.


  • First of all, contact the organiser of your trip in writing. Keep a record of your exchanges.
  • If this effort proves unsuccessful, proceed as follows:

- if you live in France, you can receive assistance from the Tourism and Travel Mediation or a consumers’ association, whose contact information is available on the DGCCRF’s website. You can also report your problem with the trader (misleading advertising, lack of price information...) on the SignalConso  platform.

- If you live in another EU Member State, Iceland or Norway, the European Consumer Centre for your country can assist you. Visit the ECC Network website for its contact information.

- If you live in a non-EU country, contact the embassy or consulate of your country in France or report your dispute on the website, via the complaint form or contact the members of


Funded by the European Union. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or the European Innovation Council and Small and Medium-sized Enterprises Executive Agency (EISMEA). Neither the European Union nor the granting authority can be held responsible for them.