With 9,000 workers losing their jobs, and around 800,000 individuals likely to lose the holidays that they’ve saved up for – the Thomas Cook collapse has caused devastation on a national, if not global scale. As the 178-year-old tour operator ceased trading, the question that many are now asking is: “how can I protect my holiday?” 

Holidays abroad can now cost thousands of pounds, especially if you’re planning on taking the whole family. Therefore, the thought of losing out on not only a getaway that you’d been looking forward to, but also such a large amount of money, is unthinkable to most. The Thomas Cook collapse that left so many in jeopardy has proven that it’s never worth risking your holiday, you should always do what you can to protect it. 

So how do you do this? This article will explain the importance of protecting your holidays through checking things such as being ATOL protected, holiday insurance and paying by credit card.

Thomas Cook Collapse: The Latest Update 

But first, let’s quickly review the Thomas Cook collapse situation. The popular high street airline announced liquidation with immediate effect in September 2019, after hinting at it for a short while prior. Imminently announcing that they had seized trading, Thomas Cook left thousands of passengers stranded abroad. There were reports of Thomas Cook passengers being held in countries who would not recognise the CAA, and also some holidaymakers came forward to reveal that their hotels were demanding payment from them. 

The latest Thomas Cook update is that passengers are now being flown home, and that Thomas Cook staff are being offered jobs by an abundance of various other travel firms and organisations.

Thomas Cook collapse - Thomas Cook plane
The popular high street airline, Thomas Cook, announced bankruptcy on the 23rd September 2019.

How To Protect Your Holiday 

The Thomas Cook collapse has made many aware of the critical importance of ensuring your holiday is well protected in advance. Even from the point of booking. You should always be making sure that your holiday is ATOL protected, but this isn’t the only way you can protect it.

ATOL Protected

When booking a holiday, it should be ATOL (Air Travel Organiser’s Licence) protected. When a purchase has ATOL protection, it prevents holidaymakers from being stranded abroad or ending out of pocket if their provider goes into administration or liquidation (much like Thomas Cook). By UK law, every travel company who is selling a package holiday is required to hold an ATOL certificate and sell ATOL protected holidays, but you should still ensure that the break that you’re purchasing is covered. 

Credit Card Payments

Purchasing holidays on your credit card is another important way of ensuring that your holiday is protected. When you pay for an item or service via credit card, it’s typically covered by Purchase Protection. Purchase Protection rules vary depending on your credit card provider. Similarly, under the Consumer Credit Act 1973, you’re also sometimes entitled to a refund on credit card purchases between £100 and £30,000 – this is called a Section 75 refund. Paying for your holiday on your credit card also allows you to keep a record of any payments should you need easy access to them in a situation such as the one presented by the Thomas Cook bankruptcy.

Holiday Insurance 

And of course, you should always look at getting holiday insurance too. Holiday insurance can cover a number of eventualities, including lost baggage, illness abroad and even cancelled holidays depending on your package. In light of the Thomas Cook collapse, it’s always a good idea to take our a solid holiday insurance package that would cover you should your holiday provider go into liquidation or administration. 

To summarise, following the Thomas Cook bankruptcy situation, it goes to show how important it is to ensure your holiday is protected – especially when you’ve invested a lot of money into it. When you book a holiday, the minimum steps you should take include: 

  1. Checking your holiday provider and package is ATOL protected
  2. Making payments on your credit card under Purchase Protection
  3. Taking out comprehensive holiday insurance 

For more financial tips, visit the Moneybright website

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