CAA publishes research behind ATOL Pack Peace Of Mind campaign

Date: 04 February 2013

The UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) is today publishing research undertaken on its behalf by Opinion Leader Research, which informed the ongoing Pack Peace of Mind consumer communication campaign.

The Pack Peace of Mind campaign is targeting consumers while they research and book their holidays, with online advertising and targeted press adverts, explaining the importance of holiday protection, how the ATOL scheme works and the introduction of the ATOL certificate.

The campaign has now seen over 60,000 people visit to find out more about ATOL; has led to more than 500,000 people watching YouTube videos about the scheme; and seen the campaign’s Twitter feed reach more than 100,000 users. In addition, ATOL adverts have appeared in newspapers with combined circulations of over 20m readers.

Opinion Leader surveyed over a thousand people in August 2012, as well as conducting six focus groups across the UK to find out what people know about holiday financial protection, what they think could be improved, and what value they place on protection.

The research found that consumers welcomed the idea of an ATOL certificate to provide peace of mind and clarity about their financial protection. 87% of respondents said they would like to receive a certificate confirming their protection. What’s more, once ATOL protection was explained to respondents, 74% claimed they would be more likely to buy an ATOL protected holiday.

Considering what the scheme ought to do in the event of a holiday company collapse, seven out of ten respondents thought that either they should be refunded or be allowed to continue with their planned holiday, or if they were already abroad be able to complete their trip and fly home as planned. There was also a consensus that financial holiday protection should cover air holidays regardless of booking method.

At a basic level awareness of ATOL stands at 80%, however 49% of these people declared they were ‘fairly’ or ‘very’ ill-informed about the protection provided by ATOL. This has informed the CAA’s approach to the Pack Peace of Mind campaign, which focuses on informing the public about holiday protection instead of solely raising awareness of the ATOL logo.

Finally the research showed that despite a strong desire to protect their holidays, with three in five holidaymakers believing they had taken steps to protect against holiday company failure confusion remains over how protection is obtained. More than half of the respondents took out travel insurance in the belief that this would provide protection if their travel company failed, when in the majority of policies it does not.

The full research report from Opinion Leader can be found on our website.

The CAA also plans further research in the future to access the campaign’s impact and feed into future awareness raising campaigns.

For further media information or to request an interview please contact the CAA Press Office on: 020 7453 6030;

Follow @packpeaceofmind on Twitter for further information and updates about ATOL protection.

Notes to editors

1. Run by the UK Civil Aviation Authority on behalf of the Government, the Air Travel Organiser’s Licence (ATOL) scheme covers the traditional package holiday, some individual flights and since April 2012 holidays known by the industry as ‘Flight-Plus’. A ‘Flight-Plus’ booking is one that includes a flight plus accommodation and/or car hire, so long as these separate parts of the holiday are booked with the same company and within a day of each other.
2. ATOL advertising has appeared online on major travel websites such as Trip Advisor, as well as targeting consumers in market as they research and book. Adverts have also appeared on YouTube and Facebook. In total, the adverts have been served more than 100m times.
3. ATOL adverts have appeared in the Daily Mail, Mail on Sunday, Daily Express, Express on Sunday, Sun, Sun on Sunday, the Daily Mirror, and Sunday Mirror, as well as the Daily Record, for two weekends in January and February.
4. The CAA is the UK's specialist aviation regulator. Its activities include: making sure that the aviation industry meets the highest technical and operational safety standards; preventing holidaymakers from being stranded abroad or losing money because of tour operator insolvency; planning and regulating all UK airspace; and regulating airports, air traffic services and airlines and providing advice on aviation policy from an economic standpoint.
5. Follow the CAA on Twitter @UK_CAA