Overnight has seen the collapse of the 178 year old travel company, affecting 150,000 UK holiday makers and around 21,000 staff worldwide.
The government and the Civil Aviation Authority are taking steps to support people who are already abroad and were due to fly back to the UK with Thomas Cook over the next two weeks.
If you are abroad at a Thomas Cook hotel then the Civil Aviation Authority may also seek to relocate you to another hotel. Hotels should not be seeking further payment from you, if you have already paid and the Civil Aviation Authority should be informed in order to deal with the matter.
As the company has ceased trading, all future holidays and flights are cancelled as of today. If you booked a package holiday with Thomas Cook then these may be protected by ATOL (Air Travel Organiser’s Licence), which provides either a refund or replacement holiday in the event that a tour operator ceases trading. If your holiday is covered by ATOL protection then you will need to contact the Civil Aviation Authority regarding the refund. The Civil Aviation Authority is to set up a service to assist with refunds by Monday 30 September, however given the number of people affected, it is likely to take some time for these to be dealt with.
If you booked Thomas Cook accommodation through third party retailers, then you may not be protected and you should contact the company with whom you booked.
If your holiday is not ATOL protected or you booked flights and accommodation separately and these were paid for on a credit card, then you may be able to claim a refund under section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act 1974. The Act provides protection if you paid more than £100 on your credit card directly with Thomas Cook. You may therefore have protection for the holiday if you only paid the deposit on a credit card. You should contact your credit card provider as soon as possible to make a claim under section 75.
Alternatively, your travel insurance may also provide some cover for the collapse, depending on the type of cover you have. In particular you will need to check if your insurance includes Scheduled Airline Failure Insurance and End Supplier Failure. This is if you have already purchased insurance for your holiday, you cannot now purchase insurance to cover a future holiday with Thomas Cook.
Useful link: www.thomascook.caa.co.uk
Civil Aviation Authority call centre: +44 1753 330 330