Travel News » September 2009 » Who is protecting your holiday?

Who is protecting your holiday?


One of the best ways to protect your holiday is to buy travel insurance as soon as you book your trip, but there are also some organisations that will help to protect your cash.

Buy your holiday from a member of the Association of British Travel Agents (ABTA) and you'll get a promise of a full refund or an alternative holiday if the travel agency goes bust before or during your trip.

If you're booking a domestic holiday through an ABTA member (, you're money is also protected against the financial failure of the operator.

You'll still need travel insurance to provide cover for other things going wrong but you don't need to buy this from the travel agent.

In fact, many travel insurance policies are more expensive than similar policies sold elsewhere and offer similar or inferior levels of cover.

If you are booking an air-based holiday or a flight, you need to check that the company has an Air Travel Organisers Licence (ATOL).

The ATOL scheme is administered by the Civil Aviation Authority ( and protects holidaymakers from the financial failure of tour operators and charter airlines.

Only companies that sell package holidays and charter or flights or discounted scheduled airlines have an ATOL licence.

If you are buying a flight from a travel agency or direct with an airline you might not be protected. Scheduled airline failure is not generally covered by travel insurance either.

Instead, you should consider buying Scheduled Airline Failure insurance. This can be added to a standard travel insurance policy.

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