Some Thoughts On Thomas Cook
Although the signs had been there for some time, the collapse of Thomas Cook came as a bombshell to many – not least the holidaymakers caught overseas when the news finally broke.
Headlines a few days before had indicated a contingency plan was already in place should the worst happen and those abroad were assured they would be able to get home, albeit perhaps not on the flights they’d booked.
But there were other victims too; businesses looking forward to a satisfying end to a reasonable summer season were thrown into confusion, hotels unsure if rooms would be paid for while shops and tour companies watched as holidaymakers vanished with increasing rapidity.
Bars and restaurants in resorts busy with customers just a few evenings before were left with empty tables while Thomas Cook staff reps were left to sort out the mess, often finding themselves defending a company they weren’t even sure would be paying them anymore.
But, there are others who have lost out too; foreign nationals living abroad have seen a route “home” severed – some having already paid for flights up front.
Hundreds or even thousands looking forward to winter trips to see family and friends will be joining the queues of creditors hoping for at least some of their money back.
It’s true, with a base overseas already established, “expats” don’t face the same kind of immediate trauma when an airline goes under.
They’re not deemed to be thousands of miles from home; they don’t have to worry about what the boss is going to say if they’re not at work as planned on Monday or about the family pets left in kennels.
But, just the same, when a long-planned trip for a special birthday, a family wedding, for Christmas, or just to keep in touch with an elderly relative goes up in smoke, it hurts just as much.
If there’s a lesson learned, perhaps we should all remember, even if we’re not on holiday, some sort of travel insurance is always a good idea.
Admittedly, a one-way trip back to Blighty isn’t going to cost the same as a package holiday for a family of four but some sort of insurance is usually offered for a few extra pounds when you’re buying your plane ticket.
Although many opt out, the demise of Thomas Cook perhaps underlines the fact that, at least in the current financial climate, no company is totally safe.
So, if you are in the process of trying to rebook a trip, it might be worth ticking that box or perhaps investing in a catch-all policy which covers you for travel throughout the year should the worst happen.
Indeed, if a move overseas is part of your plans in the coming 12 months, it might be worth including something in your budget.
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