Views sought on travel protection

28 May 2013 09:34

Compensation and financial protection for air travellers is the subject of a new government consultation exercise

Compensation and financial protection for air travellers is the subject of a new government consultation exercise

How best to protect the consumer rights of holidaymakers is the subject of a new government consultation. Evidence is being sought before changes are made to the Air Travel Organisers' Licensing (Atol) scheme.

Atol is designed to provide financial protection to people if their holiday company goes bust. It can also look after any necessary repatriation. The scheme is likely to be familiar to anyone who has claimed on their travel insurance because of cancellations and so on. The consultation is said to be concerned with the future shape of how air travellers can be better financially protected.

Aviation Minister Simon Burns said: "The Atol scheme provides financial protection for millions of holidaymakers who travel abroad by air each year in the event of their package travel company becoming insolvent. Everybody recognises that passengers need to be sure they can get home if things go wrong and they can rest assured that this protection will continue.

"But the systems used by Atol date to the 1970s, so the time is right for a fundamental review to consider whether the scheme is still the best way of providing consumers with financial protection, or whether there might be more efficient and effective alternatives."

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