• You are at risk of losing both your payments and your flights. If you have been given flight numbers contact the airline to see if it has your name, and if so, which ATOL holder booked it. Details of ATOL holders can be checked here

    ATOL holders and their appointed agents are required by law to immediately issue you with an ATOL Certificate as soon as they accept payment for an ATOL protected holiday or flight.

    Some holiday and travel arrangements purchased may not be ATOL protected, since travel firms may also sell travel arrangements that are not protected by the scheme. 

    If you are covered by the ATOL scheme, when you buy an ATOL protected air holiday or flights, you should receive an ATOL Certificate from the travel firm confirming all the arrangements you have booked, the price and your protection under the ATOL scheme. This will either be handed to you or immediately e-mailed or sent in the post.

    If you are unsure whether you are covered, you should check with the firm before you book. ATOL does not apply to flights booked directly with scheduled airlines or to flights booked with airline ticket agents. More information can be found on Checking for ATOL protection

    If you are having difficulty in getting an ATOL Certificate please email ATOL Compliance.  

    If you have an ATOL Protected booking there is no set legal period when tickets should be issued. Two weeks before departure is the norm although it is not unknown for them to be issued at the airport on the day of departure. If you are concerned you should check the status of your booking with the airline. No rules have been broken until the aircraft departs without you because you did not have a ticket.

    If you have not received an ATOL Certificate you should have received your tickets in immediate exchange for payment, if you have not and the agent is a member of a trade association, such as ABTA, you should also contact them for advice.  You should also contact ATOL Enforcement.

    The CAA regulates travel organisers primarily in order to provide consumers with protection against their insolvency, to ensure that they do not become stranded abroad or lose money paid in advance when a tour operator fails. However we have no mandate to regulate the detailed standards of service that tour operators or their agents provide, or to dictate and interpret Booking Conditions. If the business is in a trade association such as ABTA, the TTA or the Global Travel Group you should contact them for advice. If not you should contact Citizens Advice.

    The CAA regulates travel organisers primarily in order to provide consumers with protection against their insolvency, to ensure that they do not become stranded abroad or lose money paid in advance when a tour operator fails. However we have no mandate to regulate the detailed standards of service that tour operators or their agents provide, or to dictate and interpret Booking Conditions. If the business is in a trade association such as ABTA, the TTA or the Global Travel Group you should contact them for advice. If not you should contact Citizens Advice.

    Consumer rights for package holidays are set out in the 'Package Travel and Linked Travel Arrangements Regulations 2018'. Regulations 11, 12, 13 and 14 relate to changes made before departure, and are enforced by Local Trading Standards Offices.

    If the agent was a member of a trade association you should contact them in the first instance. If you received an ATOL Certificate you should check the status of your booking with the ATOL holder mentioned on it. To find the contact details of all current ATOL holders use our Check an ATOL facility.

    You should also check with the airline to see if they have, or had, your booking, and what the status is. If it is not a member of a trade association and has not booked you with an ATOL holder your payments are at risk.

    If you paid by card you might be protected by Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act 1974 or by the card industry's chargeback scheme. 

    We do not have powers to investigate fraud, although it is possible that certain types of activity may be breaches of ATOL legislation.  

    If you believe a business has acted fraudulently Please report your concerns to Action Fraud, the UK's national fraud and cybercrime reporting centre.

    You may also wish to contact Prevention of Fraud in Travel (PROFiT) which was established to tackle fraud in the travel industry and is able to offer advice to consumers and the trade.


    The CAA regulates travel organisers primarily in order to provide consumers with protection against their insolvency, to ensure that they do not become stranded abroad or lose money paid in advance when a tour operator fails. However, we have no mandate to regulate the detailed standards of service that ATOL holders or their retail agents provide and as such there is little we can do to help.

    If the business is in a trade association such as ABTA, the TTA or the Global Travel Group you should contact them for advice. If not you should contact Citizens Advice.

    Consumer rights for Package Holidays are set out in the Package Travel and Linked Travel Arrangements Regulations 2018. Regulation 15 relates to problems in resort and are enforced by Local Trading Standards Offices.

  • Related Information

    The CAA does not regulate the quality or service standards of ATOL holders. It is therefore not able to provide advice or assist customers in resolving disputes with ATOL holders. Advice and assistance in resolving a dispute should be obtained from:

    Each operate a handling service for complaints regarding their members.

    If you need help on how to resolve a dispute with a tour operator, retail agent, airline or airport, please refer to our Resolving travel problems pages.