• UK Civil Aviation Authority launched largest peacetime repatriation 'Operation Matterhorn' on 23 September 2019 to bring more than 150,000 people back to the UK
  • More than 100 aircraft used so far as part of the Matterhorn fleet
  • Yesterday, 69 flights operated to bring back 15,000 passengers
  • 93,000 flown back to UK in the first six days of the operation, over half of the total number to be repatriated
  • 70 flights are scheduled to operate today, 29 September, returning another 15,000 people
  • Operation Matterhorn continues until Sunday 6 October with nearly 1,000 flights planned in total

The UK Civil Aviation Authority delivered another extensive flying day on Saturday, running 69 flights covering 40 airports at home and abroad, as Operation Matterhorn completed its sixth day. The operation, that runs until Sunday 6 October, has successfully returned around 93,000 people so far and plans to operate another 70 flights on Sunday. 

Richard Moriarty, Chief Executive at the UK Civil Aviation Authority, said: “We have returned a further 15,000 Thomas Cook customers to the UK in the last 24 hours, and have now used more than 100 aircraft as part of our Matterhorn fleet. Although we are proud of our work so far, we are clear that we still have more than a week of the flying programme to manage and nearly 55,000 passengers to bring back to the UK and we remain focused on that challenge.

“The scale and complexity of this operation will inevitably cause some inconvenience and disruption and I would like to thank holidaymakers for bearing with us as we work around the clock to bring them back at the end of their holiday. I am very grateful for the assistance provided by all of our partners who are helping us to deliver the largest ever peacetime repatriation operation.”

Thomas Cook customers are reminded to check the dedicated website for further information - thomascook.caa.co.uk.


Flying programme information:


Statistics     Day 6 - 28/09/19      Totals to date
Flights completed           69         412
Passengers returning in the UK         15,000         93,147




The number of passengers reported is based on Thomas Cook booking data. It is likely that some passengers booked on these flights will choose to make alternative arrangements and therefore not fly, thus reducing the actual number of people who travel on our aircraft. The exact numbers will not be known until the end of the programme.  

We have now used over 100 different aircraft to support Operation Matterhorn. Our fleet size is consistently around 40 each day, but we have now used 100 different aircraft across the first six days.