'This is an unprecedented circumstance': Regina school groups won’t get full refund for cancelled Quebec trip
REGINA -- A school trip for Grade 8 French immersion students that was cancelled because of the COVID-19 pandemic, is causing a head ache for parents looking to get a refund.
More than 30 students from Ecole St. Mary School, St. Angela Merici Elementary School and St. Elizabeth School were scheduled to leave for Quebec in June.
Parents say they want to cancel the trip but said they won’t get their full refund from the travel company, EF Education Tours Canada.
14-year-old, Ayla Sarrasin was supposed to go on the trip along with her mother, Rachelle McCorriston, who was going as a chaperone.
“What they are offering us is, we can cancel up until May 15 and they’ll refund 50 per cent of our money, less our deposit and less the money we paid for the travel insurance,” said McCorriston. “They’ll give us a voucher to go on a future trip but it expires in 2022.”
McCorriston said if she uses the travel insurance she would only get around $900 back even though her family has already paid $2,600 for the trip. She said the families are not interested in postponing the trip or the voucher because of the uncertainty covid-19 presents, they just want their money back.
“This is an unprecedented circumstances and I know companies have policies and they are a business and they have to make money and they have their different policies around cancellation. But this is probably a once in a lifetime thing that any of us around actually going to go through so I feel they should be making allowance for these circumstances.”
Sarrasin is disappointed about the trip and the extra hassle that’s coming with trying to cancel it.
“We’ve been fundraising for this trip for over a year so it really sucks that we put in all that hard work but we aren’t going to go,” Sarrasin said.
EF tours responded to CTV News with a statement:
“We are continuing to work with our groups, their schools, and individual families to provide flexible options for tours that have already been booked, including extending our Peace of Mind program to all tours no matter how close they are to their departure date; and to ensure that everyone feels safe as they embark on, modify, or postpone their educational experience.”
Regina Catholic Schools and Member of Parliament Warren Steinley both sent EF Tours a letter asking for it to refund the families the money for the trip.