Thomas Cook advice
In the early hours of yesterday morning it was announced that the UK’s oldest travel company, Thomas Cook, had ceased trading. With around 150,000 holidaymakers currently overseas and many more with holidays booked, what happens now?
Are you abroad now on a Thomas Cook holiday – what should you do?
The CAA are providing new flights to return you to the UK. These flights are operating for the next two weeks (from 23 September until 6 October 2019).
Depending on your location, this will be either on CAA-operated flights or by using existing flights with other airlines. Note that repatriation flights are only available or passengers whose journey originated in the UK.
If you are due to return home after 6 October you will have to make your own travel arrangements. From a small number of locations, passengers will have to book their own return flights.
For further details you should visit the CAA website set up for Thomas Cook passengers or use the telephone numbers below:
- From overseas, call: +44 1753 330 330.
- From within the UK call 0300 303 2800.
Can you stay in your hotel?
The CAA will seek to guarantee your stay by dealing directly with hoteliers. It may take the CAA a few days to secure these arrangements. While arrangements are being made, the advice is to not make any additional payments unless instructed to do so by the Civil Aviation Authority.
If you are having difficulty and the holiday is ATOL protected then you should call +44 1753 330 330.
Do you have a future holiday booked with Thomas Cook – what should you do?
If you are due to depart from a UK airport with Thomas Cook airlines, the advice is not to travel to the airport as the flight will not be operating and you will not be able to travel.
If the holiday is ATOL protected (package holidays) you will be entitled to a full refund for the cancelled holiday. The CAA will be launching a service to manage all refunds on Monday 30 September, once the flying operation has progressed. This refund service will seek to process all refunds within two months of receipt of a fully completed claims form.
Further information on how to claim will be available in the coming days.
The guidance is to not submit anything to the CAA in the meantime as the organisation continues to focus on the repatriation flying programme to return more than 150,000 passengers to the UK.
How do we know if a holiday is ATOL protected?
If you have booked a package holiday you will have been given an ATOL certificate as part of the paperwork. You can also use this link to find out if your holiday is classed as a package.
Note ATOL protection does not apply if you have bought flights directly from the airline and flight-only arrangements bought through a travel agent are not always protected either. For more information on these exceptions, you should visit the ATOL website.
What if the holiday is not ATOL protected?
If you have flight only tickets with Thomas Cook they are unlikely to be ATOL protected. If you paid with a credit card you should be able to get a refund under section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act – as long as the purchase is over £100. If it is less than that, or you paid with a debit card, you should ask your bank for reimbursement under the “chargeback” scheme.
What about Travel Insurance?
If the holiday is not ATOL protected and you have been declined a refund by your credit or debit card provider you may be able to claim on your Travel Insurance, but only if your policy includes End Supplier Failure Insurance. This is included in all of our Gold policies and as an add on to any bronze and silver policies that we offer, so please check your terms and conditions supplied with your travel insurance.
To submit a claim via ESFI you should contact International Passenger Protection on 0345 266 1872.
If you decide to book a replacement holiday while awaiting the refund, can we amend your Travel Insurance policy?
If you choose to book another holiday to replace the one you have already taken out Travel Insurance for then we can amend the dates/destination at any time. Kindly note this is subject to an additional premium.
If you have any other questions, please do not hesitate to give our team a call on 01924 499182.
The Adultsure Team