The holiday plans of 70,000 Britons were in chaos last night after Kiss Flights became the third UK holiday firm in the last three months to go bust.
The British-based company, which operated flights to Greece, Egypt, Turkey and the Canary Islands, suddenly ceased trading yesterday, 17th August at 5pm.
The Civil Aviation Authority said the 13,000 holidaymakers who were currently on holiday through the company would get home as normal. Customers with flights leaving the UK before 6pm today were told their trips will operate as planned.
A CAA spokesman said: “We are picking up the pieces. People abroad will be fine. We will make sure that everyone will be able to come back from their holidays.”
He continued, “Because the company has failed at the height of summer, the CAA is also putting in place arrangements to allow people to travel out on their holidays for the next 24 hours, to minimise confusion and protect passengers.”
Although the “vast majority” of the 70,000 who had booked future flights with the company will receive refunds through the Atol scheme (Air Travel Organisers’ Licensing) , several thousand who had booked package deals through the company could be left out of pocket.
Travel analyst Bob Atkinson, of travelsupermarket.com, said: “At this stage it is unclear how many passengers will be protected by the Atol scheme and we are waiting for advice from the CAA.”
Kiss Flights customers who are currently abroad can contact the CAA for more information on 0044 161 444 5811. Those with forward bookings requiring general advice about refunds under the Atol scheme should go to the CAA website or call 0844 571 7262.
The latest collapse of a budget holiday company underlines the importance of having good travel insurance which covers you should an airline or holiday company go bust. Many people choose to book holidays independently, and do not know that their purchases may not be protected by Atol.
You can quickly and easily compare travel insurance across different providers to see whether or not independent travel cover is included.