Brussels, 13 March 2020
Re. : cancellation of the Yearly Congress (Assises)
The worrying evolution of the spread of the Coronavirus in many European countries led us to take the decision to cancel the Yearly Congress 2020 – after consultation with the Management Board – because of the health risk, particularly in view of our population considered “at risk” by all experts.
This cancellation affects both the AIACE (which will have to bear significant cancellation costs) and the registered participants as far as financial aspects are concerned.
As regards reservations already made, whether as part of a package or à la carte, it is possible to cancel them free of charge between now and 15 April by simple request addressed to Artion. However, it is recommended not to ask for a refund at this stage and to keep the deposit for the 2021 Congress to be held in Loutraki from 15 to 22 May 2021, if you wish to participate on the basis of a programme identical to this year’s programme. The postponement of the reservations to next year would allow AIACE to avoid important compensations at the hotel.
As far as airline tickets already purchased are concerned, you should first check whether your ticket is refundable or exchangeable; some airlines show flexibility (even with non-refundable tickets) by offering the possibility to change flights for a period ranging from 6 months to 1 year depending on the airline. If this is not the case, you should check whether your cancellation insurance covers epidemics or not; some do, most don’t. If you are unable to get a refund from the airline or your insurance company, do not cancel your flight yet; indeed, if later the airline itself cancels the flight (and there are many cancellations in prospect or already at present), they are obliged to reimburse you.
We are deeply sorry to have to take such drastic measures, but the urgency of the situation requires it.