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Have you received the holiday refund that you are due?

Package holiday firms face extra scrutiny from watchdog over coronavirus refunds

We asked our Silversurfers Community back in early April ‘Are you due a holiday refund?‘ and over 1,000 members voted and 81% told us that their holiday had been cancelled due to Covid19 and a refund was due.

The Competition and Markets Authority revealed holidays and airlines account for almost 27,000 complaints in just over two months.

Package holiday firms will face greater scrutiny from the competition watchdog over failures to refund customers, officials have revealed.

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) said its coronavirus taskforce would be prioritising the sector after seeing a spike in complaints from holidaymakers struggling to get their money back for cancelled trips.

Airlines and travel agents have faced growing criticism from customers, with pressure tactics to force through refunds in vouchers, complicated processes and outright refusals.

Investigators at the CMA said they have now received 60,000 coronavirus-related contacts from March 10 to May 17 2020, with the majority relating to the travel, holiday and hotel businesses.

It added: “Since mid-April, the large majority of complaints received by the CMA have been about unfair practices over cancellations and refunds.

“In the week to May 17, cancellation complaints were being received at a rate of 850 per day on average.”

Watchdog officials have already advised the Government that without emergency laws they will find it harder to crack down on unscrupulous businesses trying to cash in on the Covid-19 crisis.

But on Thursday it said legal avenues were being explored for a handful of companies in certain sectors.

It added: “Based on the number and nature of complaints being received, package holidays has now been included in the scope of the investigation.

“Practices of concern include refusing refunds; making it very difficult for consumers to obtain refunds; and insisting that consumers rebook or accept vouchers.”

The problem is so bad, the CMA also revealed: “Almost all the complaints about the ‘top 10’ companies relate to issues around cancellations and refunds.

“Nine out of the 10 companies supply services, all of which are to do with travel, holidays and accommodation. Only one of the top 10 sells goods.”

The 10 most complained about companies account for 37% of submissions, it added.

In one example, seen by the PA news agency, a Lastminute.com customer who had a flight cancelled was later told she would have to pay a £30 processing fee to receive a cash refund – which could take two months.

Alternatively, she was told she could have a voucher, without the fee, but was given just two weeks to decide – otherwise she would be automatically processed with the coupon.

What is your experience to date? Have you had a refund for your holiday that was cancelled? Have you been offered/received cash or a voucher? Are you happy with how you have been treated or unhappy? 

Have you received the holiday refund that you are due?

1183 people have already voted, what's your opinion? Yes No

What are your views?

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thesmilieyone
25th Jul 2020
0
Thanks for voting!
We have had 5 cancelled holidays this year.

2 Cruises
2 Coach Holidays
1 Fly holiday

We have now received 100% of monies paid.

Coach Holidays - the company rang me and told me when I would received the funds back to my credit card. All done in a mater of days - Very Good

Fly Holiday cancelled by BA just before final balance due. Deposit returned within 48 hours. Very Good

Cruises both cancelled by Cruise Line after full payment made. Having claimed a refund I received the first cruise payment 12th June which was about 50 days. The 2nd cruise refund (claimed the same day as the first) was over 70 days after being told lies and given wrong information, ignored emails and unable to contact by phone etc. In the end I gave a formal notice of intention to institute proceedings in the small claims court having given them a deadline. When I advised them that I would, as soon as judgement had been given, escalate to High Court immediate enforcement the money was in my account within hours by BACS transfer!
Having sailed with this company on 38 cruises they have now lost our custom!
JillP9
18th Jun 2020
0
Thanks for voting!
Yes I have received a full refund for my cancelled 5 day coach trip with Alfa Travel to Bournemouth in April. I've been with this company many times and am wondering whether to book some trips for next year as I have their latest news leaflet. I'm home alone and look forward to a short trip away to meet and chat to other people. Is February ok I wonder?
jeffsoo
16th Jun 2020
0
Thanks for voting!
Tui has been in touch and offered us a credit for the full amount paid plus 20%. We have now rebooked for next year and I think we have had a very good deal from them.
Katypee
5th Jun 2020
0
Thanks for voting!
We were informed by Emirates that our return journey from Brisbane had been cancelled, and they were sorry for the inconvenience, this was three days before we were due to fly back.
To cut a long story short, Qatar airways got us home at our expense.
We have been advised by Trailfinders, who we booked through, that Emirates will refund our return flight money, but it will be very modest.
To add insult to injury, we are still waiting for refund, it’s ten weeks now
kaylogan
1st Jun 2020
0
Thanks for voting!
My holiday to Spain on 19 May,2weeks with Tui all inclusive for myself and a friend was cancelled and we cannot get through to anyone at Tui. When you don't accept the credit they ring off. Do you have any advice as to how we can get our money returned?
Jacpal
28th May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
Can’t fault Jet2, had trio lots of flights booked with them and they have been great keeping me updated, offering alternative dates if required or refund both of which I have received.
Thebestyet
26th May 2020
0
Thanks for voting!
What is the point of ATOL and ABTA if they are now protecting travellers who are let down by the travel company? Still waiting for a partial refund for a short break we were meant to take at end of April. It was either take 73% of actual amount owed to us or a credit voucher which we had to rebook within 12 months. As we were travelling with relatives and we made the booking we are having to claim the difference on our travel insurance and we still have not received a penny from Jetline Holidays. It is a ridiculous situation and many are in a much worse position than we are.
lizj
25th May 2020
3
Thanks for voting!
Jet2 has been superb. We received emails informing of holiday cancellation but asking not to contact the company as it was dealing with customers according to the date of their flight. I was informed that the company would contact me. It did, offered me vouchers or a re-booking with no admin fee, also £100 discount on either of these options. I told the adviser that I wanted a refund - it was in my bank within 3 days.
andrea3wilson
25th May 2020
0
Thanks for voting!
I was told by TUI they had cancelled my holiday due to coved that was 17 March 2020. I was due to travel on the 19 March As yet all my efforts to get the promised refund have been unsuccessful.
I have been told lies about when I should get the refund, one call centre person said five days, that was April, then I was told 28 days,, I has now been over nine weeks. I am fed up with apologies, excuses. Just give me my refund, we need this money as we have no income during lockdown.
Chris Curgenven
25th May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
I joined a group tour with Saga holidays to southern India for 22 days
We left the U.K. on the 9/3/2020...arrived in India the following day 10/3.

On the 14/3 we informed by our tour guide that our trip was being cancelled due to the state of Kerala closing to tourists due to the virus...and that India was going into lockdown .

Arrangements we being made to get us home asap. On the 16/3 we returned to Chennai and We flew home on the 17/3....excellent arrangements no complaints about that.

No communication from Saga at all, everyone has had to fight for information and eventually some of us have received a refund for the unused portion of the trip ...but we have all received a different percentage of the cost....no breakdown of how the cost has been reached or explanation .
Those who booked direct were dealt with first, via a travel agent last. ( my travel agent was exasperated by it all)
No one could claim on insurance as we had no paperwork from Saga.
So for 14 nights unused tour I received a refund of 51%, others received 47%....54%. Etc.

Very badly managed...I appreciate the enormity of this situation but feel it could have been dealt with better..
I’m also waiting for a refund from Singapore airlines for a cancelled flight ....
SarahG37
25th May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
I recieved a call to say my holiday was being cancelled back in March, due to fly April 12th. Offered vouchers but asked for cash refund. Called 4 weeks later to be told it was in hand after waiting after an hour together through. Called again 2 weeks after that ,another hour waiting, to be told same thing.
Called 2 weeks after that, got through straight away. Really helpful this time and refund a week later.
Lanna
25th May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
I have received a refund from Loveholidays for the accommodation part of my cancelled trip but I am still waiting for a Ryan Air refund and have been told I might have to wait until next spring!!!!
Rowandrive
16th Sep 2020
0
Thanks for voting!
I have been waiting for 5months for a refund holiday was cancelled on the 15 May but cannot get through on the phone nor chat not very happy but what can you do but waite
AlanB774
25th May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
Received 2 refunds from 2 separate companies for cottage holiday bookings
Doll
25th May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
I was offered a full refund by Titan for a may break to Morocco but chose to take their offer of a generous discount for the same holiday next year. Impressed.
viking
25th May 2020
2
Thanks for voting!
Sounds like Ryanair at their very best, M'Oleary must be very proud.
JNPPAP
25th May 2020
2
Thanks for voting!
We had booked a holiday in Canada during May. As soon as the FCO indicated that the travel restrictions would last until after our departure date we contacted our travel agent. Their response was that the airline (Transat) don't give refunds, they will give a credit note for 12m. The "Rocky Mountaineer" don't give refunds as they are a Canadian company!
I replied that a deferral until next year was not an option, as we would probably be visiting family in Australia.
Two weeks later the agents rang us and told us to ring coop refunds. They confirmed a full refund would be with us in 10days. In fact the money was in our bank within six hours - pretty damn good.
My advice is:- stick out for the full amount you require, don't be fobbed off with deals or partial refunds.
Be firm.
Linda Armstrong
25th May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
I have been told that I should get a refund but not until end of October 2020 holiday was cancelled due to covid 19, I asked why did I have to wait as they are breaking the law there responce was they are waiting for airline and hotel to refund to them, airline had already contacted me for a refund but as this was a package holiday it was the responsibility of the holiday company to refund
If I accepted refund from airline I then wouldn't get the rest of the money back, so I know a refund for flight was available so why will holiday company not give refund now.
DianeH79
25th May 2020
2
Thanks for voting!
I have a problem with booking.com. They insist in me having NGOs travel voucher imkeep on telling them I don't want it as it's no good to me, it's not for a huge amount of money but it's the principle of having to fight to get my money back when I didn't break,the terms of the contract the hotel did. For reasons that I do understand they keep,saying that under French law they can only offer a voucher. My reply is under eu law which for now we are still a member of French law doesn't apply, under our law I am entitled to a refund because they broke the terms.
DianeH79
25th May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
For ngo please read it should say a travel voucher. Not ngo, predictive text is a pain
evince
25th May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
I have received some but not all I haven't received a credit note for the outstanding amount either
PaulaH
25th May 2020
2
Thanks for voting!
We were due to go away on 5th May. About a month before we got an email saying the holiday was cancelled and that they had attached a voucher for 110% of the value of the holiday. As the voucher was not bonded we wrote back pointing out that we were entitled to a full refund within fourteen days and provided bank details so that they could provide the refund. To our surprise the money arrived within the timescale.
Sylvia williams
25th May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
Have had absolutely no communication from TUI re my store booked holiday to Madeira which should have taken place beginning of May.
RonK
25th May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
Three days into our trip to Egypt which included a 7day Nile cruise the place shut down. We had two days in the hotel one of which was all inclusive the next two days we were in lock down with very basic food. The 7 day cruise was cancelled, also the last 4 days hotel cancelled. We managed to get a rescue flight home. We have been trying to get a refund for two months now and have only been offered a credit, which we don't want.
LynnK9
25th May 2020
2
Thanks for voting!
When my holiday with Jet2 was cancelled I received an email with three choices
Amend my holiday
A credit note
A refund
I pressed the button for refund and I was asked to check my contact details to make sure they were correct. A couple of days later I had an email saying that a full refund would be made to the card I’d paid on with three weeks. About ten days later the full amount was in my bank account.
Brilliant service from Jet2.
MonicaH
25th May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
Booked hotel and parking through Holiday Extras, been offered a voucher for future stay no offer of refund. Have emailed the company several times, some email addresses no longer available, continuing to email but get a generic email back, now email telling us that we had emailed the wrong address. Just a joke! Have used them a number of times but never again.
Also awaiting a refund from Ryanair. We’ll see!!!
In both cases the company cancelled the booking not us.
JulieS476
25th May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
Still waiting for a refund from Ryanair for hold baggage I paid for direct with them and not the travel agent. When I fill in the refund form it says my booking does not exist! Have not been able to speak to anyone apart from their robot which is useless !
SheilaA5
25th May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
I have had 2 holidays booked with different companies. Both have been cancelled due to COVID19. One was refunded. The other offered a credit voucher or rebooking at extra cost. I asked for a refund but they sent a voucher anyway and I was still waiting for a response when the company went into administration. I thought that in this situation the refund would be covered by ABTA but the advice given is to claim from the card company if payment was made by credit or debit card.
Steve551
25th May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
Canadian Affair refusing a refund as it says our carrier, Transat, is only issuing cancellation invoices. Tried travel insurance and credit card company with no success as we booked through an agent. May get money back if the company folds!
JNPPAP
25th May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
Please see my post. Transat seem to be very obstructive but we got our money back & so should you.
Good luck
Soldier
25th May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
Eurocamp have refunded in full after first offering a voucher. Hope to rebook when sites open but only a last minute deal !!
hmgreig
25th May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
Been told no refund processed until lock down is lifted.
We were due to go o n holiday 5.5.20.
Booked with globalhoppers and I've been consistently fobbed off with excuses since March
TinaB63
25th May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
I am still waiting for communication with Lastminute.com re cancelled holiday in March. I received an email on 30th April stating I will receive an email in 14 days with options. Still waiting for the email and when you phone the help line it just cuts you off.
JeanGillies
25th May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
I got through to TUI on Thursday and the refunded money was in my account by Saturday. I had to wait quite a long time on the phone but when I got to speak to one of their staff, they were helpful, friendly and processed my refund within ten minutes. They’re getting a bad press at the moment and I was anxious in case I couldn’t get a refund but it turned out to be quite an easy process.
MonicaH
25th May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
Had you received the ‘refund voucher ‘ or did you just ring Tui to request a refund?
andrea3wilson
25th May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
I have found the people that I have spoken to at TUI pleasant and very apologetic, but nine weeks since my message from TUI to say the were going to refund me, an I am still waiting, I was due to travel on 19 March 2020.
Could you give me the number that you contacted TUI on.
Most of the telephone numbers I have are no longer in use.
CatrinaM
25th May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
We booked a walking holiday with Exodus travels which we were due to travel in July.. They contacted us to say all their holidays were cancelled and we could rebook or get a Refund credit note which has an expiry date of Jan 2021..If we hadn't rebooked another holiday by then we could claim a refund then. We sent 2 further emails requesting that we have a refund to which we were told they could not afford to do so and that they were now going to be furloughed within the next day so we needed to accept the RCN.. The consultant then advised us if the company did go into administration in the meantime that our RCN would be covered by ABTA. This did not give us much confidence that we will get our monies back that we are due
viking
24th May 2020
2
Thanks for voting!
The various holiday companies and their handling of this crises can leave a lot to be desired.
However the holiday travel insurance companies and their excuses for not allowing a refund really are mind bogleing. They must have spent days and days going through a list of excuses which they could use to get them off the hook to pay out. One must ask ones self is there any point in taking out an annual travel insurance at all ??
Frankifirst
23rd May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
Can get through on the telephone but then asked to call back later because of high volume of calls. No facility to remain on the line in a wait queue.
Tried applying online for a refund but site only takes you to "rebook" option. This is TUI.
Yagala
23rd May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
It was some years ago when I decided to go on "a sigles" holiday after my wife passes away and friends advised me to go on a trip like that, which I did after thinking about it for a while.
Obviously I did not think long enough because after a couple of day in a hotel I came back to my room after wandering around town or a while, only finding an unknown female in my room whom stated "I looked like I could use some female company for the night", I immediately went back to the hotels lobby and demanded another room and some one from the hotel to accompany me in order to get my things back.
The following morning I went back home at my own cost and since then I have not gone onto any kind of holiday anywhere.
My complaint to the company received no answer whatsoever.
SueC62
23rd May 2020
2
Thanks for voting!
In mid March Pegasus Airlines contacted me to offer confirm/change/cancel for my flights from Turkey to Manchester at the end of March. I cancelled and was given a full refund, including the booking fee. When Easyjet cancelled my April flights to and from Tenerife, I was only given the change/voucher option. I decided to take the voucher as it gave me more options for the future. I also decided that as the money has already gone, taking a voucher rather than a refund might help to ensure Easyjet doesn't go bust. If we want to continue to travel abroad, we need the airlines.
Sue
22nd May 2020
2
Thanks for voting!
I should have been returning from a cruise tomorrow. Today I have received a full refund from Royal Caribbean via Hays. They have been in touch with me since this pandemic began. Cannot fault them.
Felix1
22nd May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
Fantastic ships in Royal Caribbean fleet. Glad I went before all this started..
Catton
22nd May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
Took three months and lots of emails and phone calls.
ElisabethR
22nd May 2020
2
Thanks for voting!
Not had my refund yet. Saga says if we have not rebooked by 31st July the monies will be refunded 1st August. Why the long wait I wonder......... I am shielding and goodness knows when I shall be let out of my home let alone the country. Looks like Costa del Garden this year not Costa del Sol..
Merlinthefirst
22nd May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
we were due to cruise with Celebrity on 20th April which was obviously cancelled. We have received notification from Celebrity that we are due a Future Cruise Credit but as yet have had nothing from our travel agent. We were told that we should have had this by May 13th but no phone call from the agent and no response to email
Tiggi
22nd May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
I had to wait over two months past my holiday date of departure to get my refund, but it was a smooth transaction once I received the call from my holiday company
Billythequiche
22nd May 2020
2
Thanks for voting!
Our holiday is in the UK at a UK owned hotel, within a UK hotel group. We were instantly offered a refund but asked them to retain our monies against a rebooking when possible. We are lucky to be able to be flexible on dates. I make no apology for praising UK companies.
Just before things went sour, we booked a cruise for next year at a local Cruise shop, when we asked we were offered a refund up to February next year.
GrahamS2
22nd May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
My son booked with Ryanair, still awaiting refund. Pandemic induced.
Retiredyorkie
22nd May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
Booked holidays with a well known over 50's holiday company. June holiday was cancelled due to pandemic was emailed with a credit note stating I could either use it to book another holiday or money would be refunded at the end of July.

Rang and informed them I had previously booked an holiday with them in September and I was then refunded all my June holidays costs within 14 days.

No complaints so far - waiting to see what is happening for September holidays.
HeatonRanger
22nd May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
One airline has given me credit towards my next booking, another airline has rejected my claim outright.
parsnip54
22nd May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
Had booked 2 weeks to Tenerife staying at CLC Paradise and flying with Ryanair. CLC have been absolutely fantastic, keeping us informed all the way. Ryanair cancelled the flights 10 days before we were due to fly and offered a refund which we accepted.. That was 5 weeks ago now and no sign of the refund. They have since offered flight vouchers which we declined 3 weeks ago. Since then nothing. Impossible to get in contact with them even with the chatbot.
I live in hope....
Wilf
21st May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
We have but I know a lot of people who have not including one of my daughters with a well known upmarket tour operator who will remain nameless for the moment. I think it is outrageous. It is not their money and they should refund it immediately. Disgraceful and not British!
Felix1
21st May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
I have not asked. Waiting to see if its offered. However, holiday not till June and whatever the outcome never going on a plane or ship again.
Wilf
21st May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
I know how you feel but we have said we will not travel until there is a vaccine...will be ok then hopefully
Felix1
21st May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
I really do not like travelling in such proximity with strangers. Our last flight confirmed my views. I had a middle seat. Lady on the outside was rather large sat on me all the way. Husband had to pull her up out of her seat! In emergency I would be stuck. Woman changed her babys nappy on the seat in front. Oh my word, it stank. She spilt some of content on the floor and her mother tried to hide it rubbing it in with her shoe. Small babies screaming with fright all the way. Nightmare.
Wilf
21st May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
That does sound like a nightmare. One of my daughters went to the Canaries on easyjet a few years ago and was in the window seat and the middle seat was taken by a lady so large she was half in my daughters seat as well and for 4 hours my daughter was stuck in her seat!
Valleyman
22nd May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
I agree. We must ask ourselves why do we need to fly and sail around the world bringing disruption and pollution. Stay local, support your country.
Felix1
22nd May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
Pleased to say our travel company rang today, we are getting a refund.
Felix1
22nd May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
I support you. My husband loves foreign travel otherwise I would not go. For me the best place in the world are the Yorkshire Dales. Travelling to Pateley Bridge by car, from Leeds, you come to the descent into the valley. Always, I have this sense of peace, that I am coming home. Love it.
swaneldo
21st May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
Booked with Kent & Sussex Cottages; had to cancel early March due to illness; provided requested medical statement from GP; was told that I qualified for a refund (nothing to do with Covid); chased up few weeks later and Kent & Sussex Cottages had changed the policy to suit themselves. Now told they were not honouring any refunds prior to the pandemic escalating.

Utterly disgusted by this crass and shoddy behaviour - I will never book through them again and would advise others to avoid them if they feel changing policies whenever customer service is required is ethical business. This whole situation with travel companies and refunds due stinks.
Ian123
21st May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
I haven’t heard anything about my Magic Weekend ( Superleague Rugby League ) which is only a weekend.
I am confident that when the tournament does take place, even if it’s next year, my booking will stand.
I don’t think I would be so laid back though if like one family I read about who paid £14,000 for a family holiday.
Ouch!
Mome
21st May 2020
2
Thanks for voting!
We were due to go away with jet2 in may, but they got in touch with us and after speaking to someone we got our full refund within a week. They were brill we will definitely use them again
Valleyman
21st May 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
I have a trip booked with a coach company (smallish amount) and am happy to have a credit note. The company have already paid out for hotels etcetera and would go bust if they paid back all fees taken. I will want a holiday when this is over. If the company did fail the repayment is covered by the regulatory body.
Marley444
21st May 2020
2
Thanks for voting!
My daughter and her husband had a very expensive holiday booked with flights they booked separately on Opodo. They have had a total nightmare trying to get a refund. They elevated it to the founder of the holiday company who said he would process the refund but still they have received nothing, and Opodo were impossible to get through to and they are still waiting for their money back from them as well. They are seriously out of pocket and the two companies have been sitting on their money for months ... disgraceful!
Munsterlander
21st May 2020
2
Thanks for voting!
I had booked tickets on British Airways to Geneva with my wife. We did not get a refund but vouchers which is good enough for us and it was a very simple process to do on their website ba.com

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