You will likely have seen the sad news this week that after 178 years in business Thomas Cook lost their ongoing battle to save their struggling company when the banks refused to further refinance their debts. Over 22,000 jobs have been lost and it is estimated 120,000 holiday makers are still abroad waiting to be repatriated home along with Thomas Cook resort reps who lost their jobs and homes all in one go. Other airlines in conjunction with the CAA are rallying to bring them home, with Virgin flying reps home in style from Orlando in Upper Class no less. Its amazing to see the travel family coming together in what is a dire situation for many. My thoughts are with them all at what must be a very worrying and stressful time for them.
Its a huge blow to the travel industry to lose such a giant player on the market, but that aside you may be wondering what effect this will have on the holiday market and for you. I have had emails from clients asking if there are any rock bottom price crashes as a result of the collapse but actually what is happening is quite the opposite.
Thomas Cook had thousands of holidays available to purchase and with over 100 aircraft in operation they provided several thousand flight seats on a daily basis, jetting clients off to various destinations around the globe. With those now non existent there are far less holidays available and its probably no surprise that the remaining tour operators such as TUI and Jet2 are taking advantage of this and the desperate families now without a holiday who are rebooking at whatever cost. Prices have sky rocketed and flight departures to top destinations such as Greece, Spain and the Canaries are virtually sold out for the several weeks.
Thankfully the cruise market is somewhat sheltered from the effects of the Thomas Cook fall out so cruise fares remain steady, although flight fares for the next few months are increasing if available at all.
So what should you do to get a good deal? Book early.
Late deals are fast becoming a thing of the past with cruising, the cruise lines are holding steady and choosing to reward early bookers with the best deals and freebies even if that means the ships sail with empty cabins. With P&O due to release their summer 2021 programme next month there will be some super savings to be had including free kids or £1 kids places if they repeat the deals from their last launch. Cunard are on sale this week with some fantastic early booking bonuses and low deposits. Deposits from £1 per person are available aswell as huge savings, free parking and free onboard spend so for me its a no brainer. Get booked well in advance and you wont be sorry.