Holidaymakers reminded to pack their ATOL certificate before travelling this summer

Date: 22 July 2013

With schools set to close for summer this week and thousands of families heading abroad for their holidays, the UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) is reminding holidaymakers to pack their ATOL certificate to make sure they’re covered if something happens to their travel company.

Families booking ATOL protected air holidays are covered if their travel company collapses either before they travel, or during their holiday. But to have peace of mind they will get their money back or return home safely they’ll need an ATOL certificate, which confirms their protection and explains what they should do if something happens to their travel company.

This is the first summer when holidaymakers will be travelling with ATOL certificates, after it was introduced in October 2012. Having access to the certificate whilst away will mean holidaymakers can easily know they are protected and can ensure they get home safely.

Andy Cohen, Head of ATOL, said:
“Thousands of families will be setting off on their summer holidays this week and the vast majority of them will enjoy trouble-free trips. However, things can go wrong and if your travel company collapses whilst you’re away, your ATOL certificate proves you’re protected and lets you know what to do next.

“It’s therefore really important that people remember to pack their ATOL certificate when travelling abroad this summer, just as they would their passport or travel insurance. This will give them the peace of mind they are protected whatever happens to their travel company.”

The CAA runs the ATOL scheme to protect holidaymakers against the risk of their travel company failing, and over £60m has been paid out to cover the hundreds of thousands of UK holidaymakers that have been affected by travel company failures in the last three years.

All passengers that book flights and accommodation together with the same company should be protected by the ATOL scheme, and will receive an ATOL certificate as soon as they make any payment towards their holiday.

Before making a booking, customers should first check they will receive an ATOL certificate; this clarifies what is protected, who by and what to do if something goes wrong. Holidaymakers can also check if a company offers ATOL protection by searching its name and licence number at www.packpeaceofmind.co.uk.

For further media information please contact the CAA Press Office on: 020 7453 6030; press.office@caa.co.uk

-ENDS-

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. For further information on how the ATOL scheme protects holidaymakers please visit
www.packpeaceofmind.co.uk.>
3. Follow @packpeaceofmind on Twitter for further information and updates about ATOL protection.
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; regulating airports, air traffic services and airlines and providing advice on aviation policy from an economic standpoint.