Civil Aviation Authority set to bring stranded Thomas Cook passengers home

The UK Civil Aviation Authority is preparing to help bring 150,000 stranded Thomas Cook passengers home.

Monday, 23rd September 2019, 08:29 am
Updated Friday, 27th September 2019, 23:27 pm
A repatriation operation has been launched to bring stranded Thomas Cook passengers home. Photo: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire

Following the collapse of travel company Thomas Cook this morning, all the firm’s flights have now been cancelled – leaving 150,000 customers stranded abroad.

The CAA has been asked by the Government to organise a repatriation programme – which will be the largest ever peacetime operation since the collapse of Monarch in 2017.

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Customers in the UK yet to travel have been urged not head for the airports.

The CAA has secured a fleet of aircraft to start flying Thomas Cook passengers home from today until Sunday, October 6.

ATOL protected passengers with future bookings are entitled to a full refund for their cancelled holiday.

Passengers currently overseas may also make claims for the cost of replacing ATOL protected parts of their trip, or for out of pocket expenses as a result of delayed flights home.

The CAA will be launching a service to manage all refunds by Monday, September 30, once the repatriation operation is under way.

The refunds service will seek to process all refunds within 60 days of claims being made.

Richard Moriarty, Chief Executive of the UK CAA, said: “News of Thomas Cook’s collapse is deeply saddening for the company’s employees and customers, and we appreciate that more than 150,000 people currently abroad will be anxious about how they will now return to the UK.“The Government has asked us to support Thomas Cook customers on what is the UK’s largest ever peacetime repatriation.“We have launched, at very short notice, what is effectively one of the UK’s largest airlines, involving a fleet of aircraft secured from around the world. The nature and scale of the operation means that unfortunately some disruption will be inevitable. We ask customers to bear with us as we work around the clock to bring them home.

Visit thomascook.caa.co.uk for advice.

A 24-hour helpline from the UK is 0300 303 2800 and from overseas is 44 1753 330 330