East Anglian travel agent Premier Travel reassures customers affected by Monarch Airlines
- Credit: PA
A travel agent has moved to reassure customers left stranded by the collapse of Monarch Airlines that they will not lose money.
East Anglian firm Premier Travel, which has offices across the region including in Norwich, Bury St Edmunds, Dereham, Newmarket, Swaffham and Wymondham, said it had more than 150 travellers affected by the airline's closure.
The travel agent said it had set up an emergency team to coordinate alternative arrangements for customers and had been monitoring the situation since Saturday.
Monarch's board called in administrators KPMG in the early hours of Monday and ceased to trade, cancelling the flights and holidays of 860,000 people.
Some 110,000 customers overseas are being flown home in what the government is calling the UK's biggest peacetime repatriation.
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A further three quarters of a million people held future bookings with the travel firm.
Administrator Blair Nimmo said the company, which employs around 2,100 people across its airline and tour group, had struggled with mounting costs and competitive market conditions that saw it suffer a period of sustained losses.
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Passengers already abroad are being flown home at no extra cost.
Many are in popular holiday resorts in Spain and Portugal such as the Costa del Sol, the Algarve and the Canary Islands.
The government has warned passengers to expect disruption and delays as it works to ensure there are enough flights to return the 'huge number' of passengers. Those who have not yet departed will receive a full refund if their booking was protected by the Air Travel Organiser's Licence.
Premier Travel director Paul Waters said no one who had booked their holiday through his firm would lose out financially as they were covered.
He said: 'Our customers and their travel plans are of the utmost importance to us at this time and our priority is communicating with them to reduce the impact of this failure.
'Our thoughts and best wishes go to all our colleagues and friends within the Monarch Group at this time.
'Monarch have been operating since 1967 and have been a huge supporter of independent travel agents since their inception.'