Thomas Cook and TUI have cancelled all holidays from the UK as the new national lockdown takes effect to try and beat the growing number of Coronavirus infections.
TUI said that passengers due to travel from airports in England before mid-February, or from a Scottish or Welsh airport up to the end of January, would not be able to travel and that it would contact customers to discuss their options.
The UK’s largest travel firm said it would offer customers “an incentive” to rebook to a later date but as the holiday company has cancelled passengers have a right to a cash refund.
TUI added that “Customers currently overseas can continue to enjoy their holidays as planned and we will update them directly if there are any changes to their holidays,” although rumours from Westminster are suggesting that a Negative COVID test could be introduced as a requirement to enter the UK from as early as Friday.
Thomas Cook UK, a new holiday company by Chinese holiday company FOSUN who bought the rights to the name, launched as an online-only travel agent last year. It said it will be contacting customers to a refund or allow the customer to rebook.
Thomas Cook UK’s Chief executive Alan French said: “We’ve seen over the festive period that customers are looking ahead to the summer and beginning to book in earnest for those important summer weeks in the sun.”
He added that he expects demand later in the year to be even higher after the vaccine roll-out grows and people have been forced to spend more time at home.
Jet2 has said it is cancelling all flights up to and including 11 February.