The UK Civil Aviation Authority has published a summary of the responses received in its ATOL Reform consultation, which engaged industry stakeholders in the Civil Aviation Authority’s proposals intended to improve the financial resilience of individual ATOL holders with better direct protection of consumers' money.
The consultation received 305 different responses from a range of stakeholders, including ATOL holders, travel agents, trade bodies and member organisations representing travel companies, financial stakeholders such as UK Finance and consumer bodies.
The summary document has collated the range of views expressed and helped identify new points which had previously not been considered in the consultation.
There were two significant themes across all the different groups of stakeholders who responded:
- There was a wide range of views on the best option for how the ATOL framework should be reformed, with a general consensus that change, in some form, was necessary.
- There was a general agreement that a variable ATOL Protection Contribution (APC) would likely result in a fairer system.
Michael Budge, Head of ATOL at the UK Civil Aviation Authority, said:
“We would like to thank everybody who shared their views on the first consultation. It is important that this is a direct conversation with the travel industry and our wider stakeholder community which will allow us to understand and take account of the views of our stakeholders as part of our final decisions.
“Our analysis from before the Covid-19 pandemic, learning from the collapses of travel businesses such as Monarch and Thomas Cook, as well as impact of the pandemic itself has highlighted the need to carefully consider the means by which travel businesses can better protect consumers’ money and the need to improve the financial resilience of ATOL holders.
“Having carefully considered the views of the industry in the first consultation, a second consultation with specific proposals will be launched later this year before our final decisions are made.”
The summary of responses document can be found here.