Message to Co-op Travel customers over their holidays

A travel agent has issued advice to icustomers who have booked holidays after the chaos at many airports across the UK, which has seen a swathe of flights cancelled. Families have been left facing misery with major delays or seeing their sunshine breaks cancelled due to flight issues.

Your Co-op Travel, which has nine branches in Staffordshire including in Burton, Uttoxeter, Rugeley and Stafford, says despite the scenes of disruption it has not put customers off booking holidays this summer. It said 69 per cent of the holiday bookings it has taken in the past week alone were for breaks this summer as people rush to get away after most not travelling abroad for two years due to covid.

Mark Mitchell, head of commercial for Your Co-op Travel, part of The Midcounties Co-operative, said: “Some of our customers’ holidays have been affected by cancelled flights or delays at airports, namely Birmingham, East Midlands and Bristol, but, overall many more flights and holidays are going ahead than not.

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“We’re receiving a greater volume of enquiries from worried customers than usual, who’ve seen the media reports of travel chaos and want reassurance about their upcoming summer holiday. However, it’s not deterring customers from booking summer getaways and we’re not seeing a significant number of customer cancellations either.

“Many of our customers haven’t been abroad in three years and, now the majority of the covid travel restrictions have been lifted, they just want to get away. Our advice to customers is to buy a package holiday with one of the reliable, ATOL-protected tour operators that Your Co-op Travel sells, including our own tour operator, Co-op Holidays.

“If there is an issue, the tour operator will provide either an alternative flight and/or accommodation or, if the holiday has to be cancelled, a refund is issued. Booking a package holiday through a travel agent such as at Your Co-op Travel, offers an added level of protection, with a dedicated professional who will be there to assist you every step of the way.

“We’re telling customers who are travelling imminently to check the airline’s app for updates on their flight before they travel and to keep checking our Facebook page for the latest news and advice. We’re asking customers not to arrive at the airport earlier than the recommended time as this could affect the flow of passengers through the airport and, to keep queues moving, we’re urging them to have liquid, gels, pastes and electrical items ready to remove swiftly from their bags when going through the security screening.

“We’re also advising holidaymakers to be prepared in case there are delays at the airport by packing extra entertainment for the children, as well as snacks, battery chargers for devices and a blanket and travel pillow. Our thoughts were with any holidaymakers who were caught up in the recent delays and cancellations.

“Our colleagues are here to help make travel this summer as smooth as possible. As the world reopens, we’re here to help our customers go on new adventures again, see the world, feel the sunshine on their faces and take a break from the day-to-day.”

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