Information for travellers affected by Monarch collapse

Information for travellers affected by Monarch collapse

Photo: FCO.

Updated 5 October: The Foreign Office says that 34,608 Monarch customers are already back in the UK, being brought back on more than 173 flights. Today, Thursday 5 October, the CAA plans to bring back 6,885 passengers from Spain, 10,793 in total from across all Monarch destinations.

The CAA launched its flights programme on Monday to bring 110,000 people back to the UK. On the first two days 119 flights operated, bringing 23,330 travellers home. Yesterday, 54 flights operated with 11,287 passengers. Today, 58 flights are planned. This programme will run until Sunday 15 October.

The FCO says that all future Monarch bookings, flights and holidays, are now cancelled. Passengers currently overseas shouldn’t go to the airport unless their flight back to the UK has been confirmed on monarch.caa.co.uk. Once their new flight details have been confirmed, customers should aim to arrive at check-in three hours in advance of their new flight time as check-in is likely to take longer than normal. No-one will be able to request to fly back to the UK earlier than the date of their original flight with Monarch. The vast majority of customers’ new flights will be at the same time or later than their original booking, so they should continue to enjoy the rest of their holiday.

Monarch customers who haven’t yet started their holidays should check whether they have an ATOL certificate for their booking. Customers holding an ATOL certificate issued by Monarch should check monarch.caa.co.uk for more information about how to claim a refund for their flights or holidays. Customers holding an ATOL certificate issued by another travel agent or tour operator should check with whoever they booked their holiday or flights with, for more information about what happens next. Customers whose future travel is not protected by ATOL should check with their travel insurer, or – depending on how they paid for their holiday – their credit card or debit card issuer, in the first instance.

The CAA’s dedicated 24 hour helpline – 0300 303 2800 (+44 1753 330330 from overseas) – is available to provide additional assistance to customers.

Updated 3 October: HERE, again, is the link to check the schedule of rescue flights.

There have been several reports about hotels demanding money from holidaymakers booked in through packages arranged by Monarch. Whether they are spurious stories or genuine, people are concerned and so I am pleased to pass on advice from ATOL as to what to do if faced with such demands.

If you booked your package with an ATOL-protected tour operator, which Monarch was, the Civil Aviation Authority will work to ensure all customers can remain in their accommodation until their departure date. The hotel should be made aware of the situation. If they insist on payment when the holiday was already fully paid in advance of arrival, contact the CAA and confirm that it has contacted the hotel. Some hotels may not understand the ATOL protection scheme and it is possible that the demand for money will drop once the CAA has been in touch. Anyone forced to pay for accommodation again can claim a refund from the CAA after returning to Britain.

Updated 4pm: Tenerife Turismo has confirmed, from information supplied by the director of TFS, Santiago Yus, from the CAA in the UK, that some 12,500 passengers in Tenerife will be affected over the next fortnight, and who will therefore need repatriation. A schedule of rescue flights has been set up, and these will arrive empty in Tenerife to return passengers to the UK as follows:

Today, Monday 2 October: a 180 seat TITAN, destination Birmingham, and a 360-seat 747 which will return passengers originally booked on two flights. One of these was to Manchester, the other to Gatwick. The rescue flight will land in Gatwick and the passengers headed for Manchester will be transferred by coach.

There will be a range of similar flights over the next few days: eight flights will arrive tomorrow, 3 October, three on Wednesday, four on Thursday, six each on Friday and Saturday, and three on Sunday. It is expected that this kind of schedule will continue next week. Passengers should check HERE to see when their replacement flight is booked for – click on the date the flight was originally booked for, and they should arrive at least three hours in advance at TFS, where there will be two dedicated departure lounges and a specific check-in desk with personnel from the Consulate and the UK Government.

Original post 2 October: Monarch Airlines ceased trading at 4am this morning, and for anyone in Tenerife who needs to get back to the UK, the company says:

This is an unprecedented situation and because there are up to 110,000 passengers abroad, the UK Government has asked the CAA to coordinate flights back to the UK for all Monarch customers currently overseas. These new flights will be at no extra cost to you.

In what is called the UK’s biggest peacetime repatriation, the CAA has said it is taking action to get 110,000 people back to UK on specially chartered planes. The repatriation will be in place for all Monarch customers who were due to return to the UK over the next fortnight. Around 300,000 future bookings have been cancelled.

Monarch’s CAA chief executive Andrew Haines said: “We know that Monarch’s decision to stop trading will be very distressing for all of its customers and employees. This is the biggest UK airline ever to cease trading, so the government has asked the CAA to support Monarch customers currently abroad to get back to the UK at the end of their holiday at no extra cost to them. We are putting together, at very short notice and for a period of two weeks, what is effectively one of the UK’s largest airlines to manage this task. The scale and challenge of this operation means that some disruption is inevitable. We ask customers to bear with us as we work around the clock to bring everyone home.”

Any travellers who are affected should check the dedicated website monarch.caa.co.uk for information.

 

9 Comments

  1. A real shame. I thought they were the best of the airlines flying from the UK. Sadly nearly 3000 will be looking for new jobs too.

  2. What a about the people that are here for longer our flight is booked for november18th what happens with our flight to return to UK.

  3. Author

    I don’t know but think you will need to speak to your travel insurers and the British Consulate. THIS is the most recent official Government advice on the whole situation.

  4. Unfortunate situation , what I don’t understand is that the CAA are leasing planes from all over Europe to repatriate yet Monarch Fleet is sitting on Tarmac doing nothing along with redundant staff – surely CAA could use them ?

  5. From what I have read and learnt (and I had a number of future Monarch flights booked which I have lost) I am sorry Yvonne but your future flight has been cancelled as have all Monarch flights. You will have to try and arrange another flight and recover what you have paid for your Monarch flight. If you booked a flight only directly on the Monarch website, your recourse is to claim from your credit card or debit card provider. There are a few travel insurance policies that might cover cancellation due to failure of the airline but they are unusual and such events are not standard. You may be lucky if your travel insurance provides such cover.

  6. Yvonne – the CAA will only cover up to 15th October after that you have lost your flight & will have to reclaim & book an alternative flight .

  7. But monarch are not helping the people that are going home after the 15th..we know as we have had to pay for flights is a disgrace how customers are being treated

  8. You can often claim flights back from your debit or credit card company.Unfortunately it brings the old saying to mind ….Buy cheap ,buy twice….We have all had very cheap flights for so long and sometimes things go wrong so you just have to bite the bullet and move on.We are returning next Monday with Ryanair from LBA for the winter and have paid the ridiculous price of £29.00 pp !.Not sure how long it can last but it is well know that Monarch have been very shaky for the last 2 years and nobody I know would book with them. Feel sorry for all those affected though.

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