United Kingdom travel giant Thomas Cook collapses, cancels all bookings

Travel firm Thomas Cook ceases operation, stranding 600,000 vacationers

British tour operator Thomas Cook has collapsed and this is making the travel industry nervous even in Asia.

Online travel booker On the Beach Group Plc (LON:OTB) has told investors that it is working to help its customers that are now on holiday and had return flights with Thomas Cook Airlines Ltd, which along with other Thomas Cook Group Plc (LON:TCG) entities have entered compulsory liquidation.

"Due to the significant scale of the situation, some disruption is inevitable, but the Civil Aviation Authority will endeavour to get people home as close as possible to their planned dates", it said in a statement in the early hours of Monday.

Underlining that it had been "profitable for many years", the airline added that "to prevent liquidity bottlenecks at Condor, it has applied for a state-guaranteed bridging loan" which is being examined in Berlin.

More than 20,000 jobs are at risk. The move saw all bookings, flights and holidays with Thomas Cook cancelled.

The British government launched a repatriation program aimed at bringing the company's 150,000 British customers home. It has also activated a support plan for Thomas Cook customers in the country.

Two years ago, the collapse of Monarch Airlines prompted the British government to take emergency action to return 110,000 stranded passengers, costing taxpayers some £60 million on hiring planes.

"Along with other Premier League clubs, Thomas Cook Sports have been travel partners with Manchester United".

Travel journalist Eoghan Corry said that the company operated eight routes and 13 flights from Belfast and some people from south of the border would have travelled on those flights. "We extend our deepest sympathy to all those affected".

Roche and Wells estimate their guests spent £50,000 between them on Thomas Cook flights they will never catch and accommodation they will never use.

The Indian travel firm in a statement said that Thomas Cook India Group is a completely different entity since August 2012. According to the Guardian, the deal required banks to write off the debt.

But the challenges eventually proved insurmountable. In a last attempt to save the company, Thomas Cook held a very important meeting. On Sunday, British foreign secretary Dominic Raab confirmed that the government has contingency planning in place to avoid citizens being stranded outside the UK.

"After an hour they left the hotel and are now at the airport", said a spokesman for the Tunisian interior ministry. "It sets up a moral hazard".

Founded in the 1840s by a Victorian entrepreneur of the same name, Thomas Cook started out by running train trips through the English Midlands. "Just have to go home and make the most of it". "This is why there is no impact on Thomas Cook India", the statement added.

Thomas Cook's financial difficulties also raised questions about the jobs of the 22,000 people employed by the company around the world, including 9,000 in Britain.

That is draining the company of the liquidity it needs to keep operating and ramping up the pressure on one of Britain's oldest and much-loved companies.

The slowing global economy and signs of a pullback in Chinese tourist travel may have prevented Fosun Tourism from upping its bailout package.

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