BRUSSELS, May 11 (Reuters) - The European Commission will tell airlines and travel companies to offer vouchers valid at least 12 months for travel cancelled amid coronavirus when it presents this week its recommendations to help the ailing tourism industry, officials told Reuters.
Vouchers should offer the same services, same route in case of a flight and same travel conditions as the original booking. Customers who end up not using the vouchers, would still be able to ask for a full refund no later than 12 months after the vouchers were issued, the officials said on Monday.
The EU executive is also due to tell member states to guarantee vouchers to convince customers to accept them instead of a cash refund, according to a document seen by Reuters ahead of official publication due on Wednesday.
The proposal by the Commission will come as guidance to the 27 EU member states and European companies, rather than a law they would be obliged to follow.
It comes as Germany and other countries have urged a suspension of EU rules that force cash-drained airlines and the hospitality industry to offer full refunds for cancelled flights and trips. (Reporting Marine Strauss, Editing by Gabriela Baczynska)