Travel firms have been experiencing rough times because of factors such as Brexit ambiguity. However, if you are booking a holiday tour, here are some simple steps to improve your protection.
After announcing a loss of one point four billion, Thomas cook has been trying to convince the concerned customers that their holidays are okay. According to Thomas Cook, the tour operator has undertaken steps to improve its financial strength. Several passengers are worried about their flights and trips and are still contacting the tour operator after announcing this month half-year financial report.
Other tour firms have also recorded difficult trading conditions.in their statement, Tui and EasyJet have reported few losses in this month half-year financial reports. Both the firms were expecting this trend.
We have no crystal ball when it comes to predicting the future of these tour firms or the travel industry at large. However, these tips are good practice and useful in case the worst were to happen regardless of the firm you book with.
ATOL Protection When Booking A Flight Package Holiday
The Air Travel Organizer’s License (ATOL) scheme covers package holidays with a flight. As you check your holiday details, ensure to look for the ATOL protection sticker. In the unlikely event that the travel company or tour operator that developed your package halts trading, ATOL protection offers you the following protection;
- In case you have not travelled yet, you will be provided with a replacement holiday or a full refund.
- In case you are already on holiday, ATOL protection will ensure you complete your tour and return home safely.
ATOL protection scheme concentrates on protecting you if the tour firm that owns your package goes kaput. When you book an ATOL -protected trip, you will get an ATOL certificate together with your booking. You should double check to ensure you have received it. You can look out for some ATOL certificate examples from the Civil Aviation Authority. Package holidays also provide you with extra protection to ensure you enjoy the holiday you have paid for.it will sort your things out in case your airline failed.
Protection by Booking A DIY Package
Booking different holiday elements such as hotel, car hire, and flight distinctly as DIY package may give you protection. However, this is dependent on precisely how you booked the package.
- If you purchase the different elements via the same website, call centre or shop separately in a single transaction, you will receive similar protection as that offered by traditional package holiday. You will get ATOL protection if the tour has a flight and if not, you will be covered under another protection scheme such as ABTA.
- If you purchase different elements of a holiday tour in the same website, telephone call or shop visit separately in multiple transactions, or if a travel company arranges for you to purchase another element in a targeted way such as through email within twenty-four hours, you will receive a certain level of protection. It gives you protection in the unlikely event that the tour company in which you bought the ticket goes bust while owing you money but not the airline or hotel you are dealing with becomes bust. You should be informed that you have this linked travel arrangement when booking.
- You will not be covered by most of the other DIY bookings by booking everything independently. The guidelines that define the type of holiday tour you have booked for purposes of protection are complex. The rules stated above have exceptions, and so you need to be a hundred per cent clear on your stand. If not, you should ask. It is also important to note the protection above applies to holidays booked from 1st July 2018.
ABTA Protection for A Holiday Package Without A Flight
If you are a booking a holiday package without a flight, you will still be protected through ABTA scheme or another similar protection scheme. It enables you to obtain a refund or your return transport if you were abroad for a holiday already and the holiday firm goes bust.
Unlikely ATOL Protection If You Are Just Booking A Flight
ATOL does not give protection for an airline flight-only direct booking. This means if the worst were to occur, you might check for other protection forms such as your credit card or travel insurance instead of relying on ATOL cover. However, according to Thomas Cook, flight -only bookings may offer ATOL protection sometimes. But this depends on how you exactly booked it. If you book your direct flight through Thomas Cook Tour Operations, you will get ATOL protection while booking the flight with Thomas Cook Airlines; you won’t get.
Pay by Card to Enhance Your Protection
Paying your booking via credit card or debit card gets you covered if it costs more than a hundred dollars. This is even if you won’t get protected by other schemes such as ATOL or ABTA.
- Paying more than a hundred dollars protects you via section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act in which you can claim your cash in case the company went down.
- If you book the flight with a debit card or credit card that costs less than a hundred dollars, you can claim your amount via the chargeback scheme.
Travel Insurance Cover Though Not All Policies Protects You When the Firm Goes Bust
It is essential to book travel insurance immediately you book your tour. This is to make sure you are covered in the unlikely event that anything goes wrong. It is vital that you know the travel insurance cover protects you if the travel company goes kaput only if you had included specific failure cover. Additionally, this will apply if you have no ABTA, ATOL or any other protection scheme.
What Happens to The Car Hire, Hotels and Other Costs Incurred?
In case the worst happens, and you can’t travel, you may lose out to additional accommodation and activities you won’t use while you had already paid for. To avoid this, you should search for hotels that feature free cancellation though it might be more costly. You can also look if your travel insurance provides you with abandonment protection. Some people have attempted to claim these consequential losses via section 75, but this is not guaranteed.