Travelers are being assured a trip back home after UK tour operator Holidays 4 U went into administration on Wednesday with 13,000 customers currently stranded in Turkey, although the company insists the travelers will be brought home.
But experts insist no-one should book a trip from the UK to international destinations unless the company they are booking with are ATOL protected and have a valid Air Travel Organisers’ Licensing (ATOL) licence number. ATOL is a program from the UK’s Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) designed to protect travelers who have purchased flights or travel packages from ATOL members.
Spokesman for ATOL David Clover said: “There is never a good time for a travel firm to fail. Unfortunately the height of summer is the worst possible time.”
“However people who booked ATOL-protected holidays with Holidays 4 U who are currently abroad will be able to complete their holiday or claim a refund from the CAA. We would always advise people to check with their holiday company that the trip their booking is protected by ATOL.”
Anyone who booked their holidays through an ATOL protected firm will be looked after if their firm goes bust, according to the CAA, who says they will ensure travelers can stay on their vacation and still be able return home.
The CAA aims to fly travelers back as close to their planned departure date as possible, and they are asking travelers to head to airport at their regularly schedule time, unless instructed otherwise.
The CAA says it is unlikely that anyone will be returned prior to their regularly scheduled departure – but some returns may be delayed. In this situation, additional, reasonable costs for accommodation, meals and transports will be reimbursed with proof of expenditures.