Travel companies planning to renew their ATOLs next March are being urged to submit their applications as soon as possible to avoid delays.
Unlike in pre-pandemic times, when late applications were turned around quicker, next year that’s not likely to be the case, say experts.
Speaking at the AITO Conference, Matt Purser of Travel Trade Consultancy said operators need to leave enough time for discussions with the regulators, and possibly their insurers. “You should start that process now,” he said. “If you wait until the end of January to see how bookings go you are going to be in a queue of companies wanting to renew.”
Travel industry accountant Jonathan Wall of Elman Wall agreed. “Preparedness is the most important thing,” he told the conference.
In September, when the majority of companies renewed their ATOLS, very few applications were rejected, said Jonathan, but he described it as ‘a long hard slog’.