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Thomas Cook

lbaspotter

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Thomas Cook Holidays have comfirmed that they have ordered the mass evacuation of all 1,800 customers on holiday in Tunisia today due to the riots that have been taken place this week. Empty aircraft have been sent out to Monastir from 2x Gatwick and 4x Manchester this morning to repatriate UK Tourists.

Thomas Cook to fly home UK tourists after Tunisia riots

Thomas Cook has said it is bringing home all of its UK customers from Tunisia following violent protests that have left at least 23 people dead.

The company has also cancelled its next scheduled departures to Tunisia, which would have taken place on 16 January.

It said it was "strongly advising" the 1,800 tourists from the UK and Ireland currently in the country to take up the offer of return flights on Friday.

First Choice and Thomson said they were not implementing a full repatriation.

But a spokesman said the next departures on 16 January had been cancelled, and the company was "organising aircraft today, for those customers wishing to return home".

'Unpredictable'

On Thursday, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) changed its guidance for Tunisia and is now advising against all but essential travel to the north African country.

"The situation is unpredictable and there is the potential for violence to flare up," its website warns.

First Choice/Thomson
"British nationals in Tunisia should monitor the news or stay in touch with your tour operator."

The FCO says tourists should avoid rallies and demonstrations, and stay inside their accommodation if they are concerned about their safety.

The US and France are also advising against non-essential travel to Tunisia.

Thousands of demonstrators have gathered in the centre of the capital, Tunis, calling for the president, President Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali, to leave office immediately.

The action follows weeks of protests across the country over corruption, unemployment levels and high food prices.

'Precaution'

Thomas Cook said its repatriation effort extended to all of its UK customers in Tunisia, including independent travellers with accommodation or flight only.

A spokesman said: "Although there have been no specific problems for our holidaymakers, their well-being is our primary concern so, as a precaution, we've taken the decision to bring them back to the UK as soon as we can, using our fleet of aircraft today."

Protesters are angry at state corruption, unemployment levels and high food prices The tour operator has arranged six repatriation flights from Monastir airport, two returning to London Gatwick and four to Manchester.

It said everyone due to travel on 16 January would be contacted on Friday and would be able to switch their trip to another destination.

A First Choice and Thomson spokesman said: "Presently, the FCO see no need for a full evacuation of customers currently in resort.

"Therefore, at this time, customers may continue their holidays in Tunisia as planned, to return home as scheduled. Our experienced overseas team are updating our customers in resort of the situation and we are organising aircraft today, for those customers wishing to return home.

"Should the situation change, we will of course take immediate action and update customers."

First Choice and Thomson have set a helpline for customers due to travel on 16 January. They should call 0800 009 3834.

Abta, which represents travel agents and tour operators in the UK, said the FCO's guidance meant all customers with package holidays to Tunisia who had not yet travelled would be entitled to make alternative arrangements, rebook for a later date, or get a full refund.
 

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TheLocalYokel

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Always something that hinders the aviation industry.

If it's not industrial action, it's volcanic ash or snow/ice airport closures, or the recession, and the prospect of a national oil and petrol tanker drivers strike looms closer with the ballot on industrial action announced today.
 

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TheLocalYokel said:
Always something that hinders the aviation industry.

If it's not industrial action, it's volcanic ash or snow/ice airport closures, or the recession, and the prospect of a national oil and petrol tanker drivers strike looms closer with the ballot on industrial action announced today.
Many of the larger airports will be unaffected by a tanker driver strike. Smaller airports such as BRS, LTN, EMA, LBA could be effected if the strikes go ahead.

With respects to the TCX passengers, I think the company is doing the right thing. The violence flared-up quickly into a dangerous situation. I wouldn't like to caught up in it. The sad thing is it wont be doing the Tunisian tourism industry any good at all and many people will be put off from going there this summer assuming the troubles come to an end soon.
 

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Many of the larger airports will be unaffected by a tanker driver strike. Smaller airports such as BRS, LTN, EMA, LBA could be effected if the strikes go ahead.
It wasn't so much that.

If there is a strike and it is prolonged many passengers, airport staff and aircraft crews will begin to struggle to get to airports if petrol is in short supply. Goods vehicles that deliver all manner of things to airports will also be affected and some inbound business passengers are sure to be put off flying into the country.
 

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Very true.

Didn't the government intervene last time back in 2000?
 

TheLocalYokel

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They did eventually to keep essential services running but that probably wouldn't extend to ensuring passengers caught their flights to go on holiday.

Let's hope it doesn't come to a strike. That said, there is a lot of potential industrial unrest across the board following the Coalition's policies to try to begin to recover the country's economic situation. I make no comment either way about the policies on this non-political aviation message board.
 

lbaspotter

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Hi

Thomas Cook has signed a deal with Airbus to supply 12 new Airbus A321 and plans to Lease a number of Airbus A320's to replace its ageing fleet short haul Boeing 757-200 and Airbus A320's

Thomas Cook Group signs contract for 12 A321s with Sharklets



Thomas Cook Group has signed a firm order for 12 Airbus A321s, as a first step of its single aisle fleet harmonization and renewal plan which is based on the A320 Family. The aircraft will be fitted with the latest fuel saving wing-tip devices, known as Sharklets.

The new aircraft are scheduled to be delivered from 2014, together with options to purchase further A320 family aircraft from 2015.

In addition to the firm order, Thomas Cook Group plans to lease A320 Family aircraft from operating lessors.

Image: Airbus.
Source: http://blog.seattlepi.com/worldairlinenews/archives/237038.asp
 

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Thomas Cook have posted losses of 165.8m pounds for the six months ending March 31. The airline is reportedly looking at reducing the size of it's fleet next year.
 

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There have been rumours over the past six months or so about possible base closures and I think the latest news that the airline is looking to cut it's fleet size only makes this more likely now. Looking on the Thomas Cook Airlines Wikipedia page, it would seem it's Cardiff and Leeds bases are most at risk as the smaller bases are generally the first to go.
 

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There was talk on the Welsh forum two or three months ago that the CWL TCX base was going to close but the rumour seems to have gone quiet in recent weeks.

Last summer a 321 was based at CWL - this summer it's a 320.
 

lbaspotter

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Ash update from Thomas Cook.

Last Updated 23rd May 18:46

TC Airlines have now been advised of an update in relation to the position of the ash cloud tomorrow 24 May.


It is expected that Glasgow airport will be affected in the morning and therefore customers due to depart from Glasgow until approximately 11:00 will be coached down to Manchester for the departure of their flight. Customers should check in as normal at Glasgow. The Ash cloud is expected to move away after this time so is it anticipated that TCX flights due to depart after 11:00 will operate from Glasgow.

All our package holidays are ATOL bonded, which means we'll make sure all our holidaymakers are looked after if delayed in resort and get home safely.


If a holiday is cancelled and holidaymakers are unable to depart, we'll do our best to get them on holiday, but if not their money is safe.


We received excellent customer feedback in 2010, reflecting the hard work of our team in providing welfare and repatriating all of our holidaymakers during the ash cloud
 

BigMac

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I've heard a rumour that tcx are changing seat pitch of their long haul A330's to 29". Just wondered if anyone new how true this was?
 

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BigMac said:
I've heard a rumour that tcx are changing seat pitch of their long haul A330's to 29". Just wondered if anyone new how true this was?
Here's a quote from another site...

Going to mexico with thomas cook from glasgow in september'got letter informing us that we will have a 29inch seat pitch instead of 31inch seat pitch no tv screens on the back of the seats can live with that the seat pitch i can't.
So it sounds like it's not just the seat pitch that's changing, but the flight entertainment as well. :nea:
 

tleeds

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Re: Thomas Cook - Review Of UK Business Model

Thomas Cook faces a long journey back

The travel operator plans to review its UK business model after this year's operating profits fall £60m below City expectations.

Should news of tough trading in Britain, and a hiccup in France as the locals choose to avoid North Africa, cause Thomas Cook's shares to crash by 28%?

Actually, yes. The travel business is a game of big volumes and thin profit margins; it does not leave much room for setbacks. Last year, Thomas Cook carried 22 million passengers who paid almost £9bn for their holidays and flights, but the group made top-line operating profits of only £362m.

Source & Full Article: http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2011 ... homas-cook

It seems like this Guardian article is illustrating the fact that the business and finance side of the airline is being reviewed and that 'drastic' action will be made - says a seperate news story...

Not good news at the best of times!
 

lbaspotter

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Its not at alll good Thomas Cook Group UK by looks of things. As there Bos has quit his job this morning according to the Travel Trade Gazzet midday update.

Source: http://www.ttgdigital.com/news/fontenla ... 99.article

Fontenla-Novoa steps down from Thomas Cook
3 August 2011 | By Rob Gill


Thomas Cook Group has announced today that chief executive Manny Fontenla-Novoa is to step down from his role with immediate effect.

Sam Weihagen, currently Fontenla-Novoa’s deputy, will take on the role of interim group chief executive. Cook said a search process is underway “to identify a permanent successor and an announcement will be made in due course”.

Cook chairman Michale Beckett said: “The board would like to thank Manny for his contribution to the group. He leaves with our very best wishes for the future.

“In Sam Weihagen, we have a highly successful and experienced executive and the board has every confidence in his ability to lead the group until a new CEO is appointed.”

Fontenla-Novoa said: “Thomas Cook and its people have a sound heritage and I have been proud to have been part of the company.”

Cook has seen its shares plunge by nearly 50% since it issued a profits warning on July 12 and Fontenla-Novoa’s management of the company has been questioned by investors and city analysts.

Fontenla-Novoa, 57, has been Cook’s chief executive since 2007 when the company merged with MyTravel. He was previously a founding director of Sunworld and first joined Cook in 1996 when it purchased Sunworld.
 

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Thomas Cook axes six aircraft and 250 airline jobs

Thomas Cook Airlines will cut 250 jobs and axe six aircraft from its UK fleet this winter.

The Thomas Cook group told those at risk of redundancy yesterday and has begun a 90-consultation with affected staff.

The cuts amount to about one seventh of the company’s UK fleet and will fall most heavily on long haul, with five wide-body aircraft ceasing flying from the UK.

However, a group spokeswoman said: “We are not cutting long-haul all together. This is about the right fleet for the current capacity requirements. It is not about offering fewer holidays next summer.” She said the summer 2012 schedule had yet to be finalised.

The group’s UK long-haul programme this winter will make up 8% of the total, down from 13% last winter.

Thomas Cook will return three Airbus A330s to their leasing company, along with a narrow-body Airbus A320. A Boeing 767 will be reassigned to Thomas Cook’s German airline Condor and another A330 will transfer to Thomas Cook Northern Europe.

The spokeswoman said a review of the airline began in May, ahead of the group’s high-profile problems in July in August when a profits warning triggered a collapse of its share price and change of chief executive. This subsequently became part of the wider review of the UK business announced this summer.

She added: “The review will be about building the business as well as cutting costs.”

Ian Ailles, Thomas Cook UK mainstream chief executive, said: “The fleet reduction is one measure within our overall strategic and operating review of the UK business and demonstrates the decisive action we are taking to improve the profitability of our UK business.

“The airline review has focused on leases, seasonal capacity and mainstream tour operator demand, as well as operational efficiency and profitability.”
http://www.travelweekly.co.uk/Articles/ ... witterfeed

Oh dear, another airline cutting back with the loss of many jobs.

It seems it's the long haul that is taking the brunt of this, with mainly wide-bodied aircraft being cut from the fleet, though two will be moved to another part of the Group in Europe.
 

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It just goes to show aviation tax (APD) isn't working with P&O Cruises cutting back long haul flights and now Thomas Cook following suit. Other airlines have revised their long haul plans, Monarch Airlines and Jet2 among the list of other airlines that have scaled back their long haul ambitions.
 

TheLocalYokel

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It just goes to show aviation tax (APD) isn't working with P&O Cruises cutting back long haul flights and now Thomas Cook following suit. Other airlines have revised their long haul plans, Monarch Airlines and Jet2 among the list of other airlines that have scaled back their long haul ambitions.
Unfortunately, I cannot see APD being reduced - more likely it'll be increased.

The government has nailed its colours to the APD mast and no politican will ever admit to being wrong, even when they themselves know it.
 

tleeds

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Thomas Cook in talks with banks

Thomas Cook has announced it is in talks with banks about increasing the amount of money it can borrow.

The travel firm said it had seen a "deterioration of trading in some areas of the business in the current quarter".

It said it would delay releasing its full year results until it had concluded the discussions.

Last month, Thomas Cook announced it had arranged a new £100m credit agreement with its bankers.

The company has stressed that it is not currently in breach of the terms of any of its loans, but that it wanted to "improve its resilience if trading conditions remain difficult".

It said last month that the terms of an existing £150m loan and an £850m credit facility have been amended to help cashflow.

It looks like Thomas Cook are in deep financial difficulty. Surely we cannot lose one of the top travel groups in the country.... It would be a huge loss! :cry:
 

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