Events postponed due to COVID-19 threat should be refunded – DTI

Robie de Guzman

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) on Friday said that events postponed due to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) threat should be refunded.

DTI Secretary Ramon Lopez said those who have already booked restaurants and hotels for their event venues should get refunds as the situation is considered ‘force majeure’ or could not be anticipated and/or are beyond one’s control.

“Dapat po may refund. Kasi force majure po ‘yun. So, ‘wag silang matakot na, ‘naku, paano ‘to? Nag-down na kami tapos ayaw i-refund,’” Lopez said.

If they are having trouble with the refund, they may also run to the government for help.

“Pwede po silang mag-file ng complaint sa DTI, consumer complaint, 1-384 hotline, papanigan po sila ng DTI para mag-refund ‘yung establishment,” the trade chief said.

Holding of big weddings, conventions, and other mass gatherings are prohibited under Metro Manila community quarantine in an effort to curtail the spread of COVID-19.

If the event cannot be postponed, authorities suggest to implement certain limitations, such as reducing the number of guests and imposing social distancing.

Authorities are still finalizing the guidelines for the 30-day quarantine which is set to start on Sunday, March 15.

The Philippines now has 50 confirmed coronavirus cases including five deaths.

The government has repeatedly reminded the public to practice good hygiene such as regular hand washing, cover the mouth and nose when sneezing and coughing and to avoid close contact with those who are showing flu-like symptoms. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Harlene Delgado)

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