The German branch of British travel company Thomas Cook, which also went bankrupt in September, has cancelled all of its trips until the end of this year, even if they have been partially or paid in full.
In a statement, Deutsche Thomas Cook has said that it wants to return to normal from the 1st of December and start operating flights from early next year. Stefanie Berk, the company’s executive director, said that they ‘are very sorry to have to cancel these trips, but we cannot guarantee them.’ Unfortunately, this will have a knock-on effect with other German travel companies such as Neckermann Reisen, Öger Tours, Bucher Reisen and Air Marin.
British Thomas Cook suspended payments on the 23rd of September, after failing to secure an additional £200 million ($227 million) loan required by banks – such as RBS and Lloyds – to weather the winter months.
Independent tourism agency Hays Travel announced today that it will buy 555 Thomas Cook branches in the UK. The Sunderland-based travel group has 190 offices in Sunderland and has already hired 421 workers at Thomas Cook and has also offered employment to former Thomas Cook airline crews. According to David Chapman, who is in charge of managing the company’s assets, said that it was an ‘important step in the liquidation process as we sought to harness the company’s assets.’
World Tourism Organization (WTO) Executive Director Manuel Butler said today that Thomas Cook’s bankruptcy “is reordering the travel sector” and that ‘tourism worldwide is experiencing a brutal transformation.’
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Photograph by Killian Pham – Upsplash