Fate of Thomas Cook customers up in the air due to company collapse

Thomas Cook Aircraft. Credit - Russell Lee, Wikimedia

More than 150,000 are stranded abroad awaiting news of flights to return home with other airlines following Thomas Cook’s collapse.

Around 5,000 Thomas Cook customers were expected to fly from Manchester Airport today and many more are disappointed with holidays booked in the coming months.

The company announced it was to cease trading this morning.

Jacqueline Harrison, 52, hairdresser from Bolton, who was due to go on holiday on September 30, said: “[I have] not been formally informed yet [by] Thomas Cook.

“We will be refunded as it was a package deal but I also paid on my credit card as this is the third airline I’ve had this with.

“[I am] looking to book a new holiday but prices have risen dramatically.”

Thousands are affected by the news, including many people’s future holidays being cancelled with no guarantee of being refunded if they are not ATOL protected.

All customers who are booked to return to the UK in the next two weeks will be brought home as close as possible to their booked return date according to the Department for Transport.

Customers with flights booked to go abroad have been advised by the Department of Transport to stay at home and not go to the airport due to all departing flights being cancelled.

The fate of Thomas Cook has hung in the balance over the weekend when they appealed for £150m of public money but were refused due to it posing a “moral hazard” according to Boris Johnson.

The Civil Aviation Authority announced that it would arrange the repatriation of British nationals unable to fly home.

This will be the largest repatriation in since World War Two and is expected to take two weeks.

During a statement Peter Fankhauser, Chief Executive of Thomas Cook said: “I want to apologise to my 21,000 colleagues who I know will be heartbroken.

“You all fought so hard to make Thomas Cook a success.”

The company which was founded in 1841, making it one of Britain’s oldest companies, has ensured that they are working around the clock to support passengers.