Air Travel Trust Fund remains in the black, despite 34 company failures

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By Linsey McNeill
Home » Air Travel Trust Fund remains in the black, despite 34 company failures

The Air Travel Trust Fund had a healthy cash balance at the end of its 2020/21 financial year, despite the collapse of 34 travel companies during the pandemic.

That was the highest number of travel company collapses since 2008/9, said trustees in the annual report published last Friday.

However, the call on the Fund was only £11.4m in total, compared to £448m in 2019.

This was because many holidays in 2020 had been cancelled due to the pandemic, so companies had taken only deposits by the time they failed, not the full package costs.

There was no single failure that caused a huge drain on the fund, unlike the collapse of Thomas Cook the previous year.

In its financial statement, the trustees also said they had cracked down on fraudulent claims, detailing how they had previously foiled one of the biggest travel industry scams.

It said the trustees ‘work closely with the CAA [Civil Aviation Authority] and the claims handling agencies to regularly review the progress of failures, and will treat any actual or attempted fraud with the utmost seriousness’.

The ATT, which charges all package holiday customers a £2.50 levy, received £20m from eight million passengers for the year to the end of March 2021, compared to £65m in the previous 12 months.

But at the same time, it reduced its administration costs to just £1.7m from £15.6m after cancelling an insurance policy that was no longer required.

The Fund ended the year with cash reserves of £108m.

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