Chadwell Travel which trades as A1 Travel has gone out of business due to costs incurred following the collapse of Monarch Airlines.
The Romford based online and call centre agency and Atol holder was licenced to carry just under 100,000 passengers a year by the CAA.
It traded under the names A1 Travel, A1Travel.com, Bargain Holidays Online, Big On Holidays, Holiday Checker and Premier Leisure and operated the websites www.a1travel.com, www.bargainholidaysonline.com, www.holidaychecker.co.uk and www.holidaychecker.com.
Broadway Travel has taken over future bookings and will re-protect the accommodation part of holidays for customers who have not yet travelled.
According to a well placed source A1’s demise came about due to the impact of the collapse of Monarch, the UK’s fifth largest carrier which failed at the beginning of this month.
Although the CAA have repatriated all Monarch customers overseas at no cost, A1 had forward bookings for which it was liable to find new flights.
The Monarch failure and Ryanair’s programme of cancellations following its pilot rota crisis have pushed prices up for short-haul beach flying.
A1’s financial troubles were understood to have come to light this week as the half term break loomed and as the firm fell behind on payments to suppliers.
Last ditch attempts to save the company failed and it was put into administration this afternoon.
Andy Cohen, CAA head of Atol, said: “I can confirm that the company has ceased trading. It happened only recently so there is no advice available at the moment.
“We are trying to establish the facts to see how we can best help those consumers who have got holidays booked with the company.”
“We are sorry to see a company that has been around for a long time cease trading.”
A statement on the CAA website says: “We are pleased to confirm that bookings protected by Chadwell Travel Atol 5287 will still continue as planned even though Chadwell Travel has ceased trading.
“We have taken steps for another Atol holder, Broadway Travel Service (Wimbledon) Ltd ATOL 3634, to take over Atol protected bookings and carry out consumers’ holidays.
“All customers, who are currently abroad, will be able to complete their holidays and return home on their planned day of departure.
“All customers of Chadwell Travel/A1 Travel, including those with Monarch Airline flights, are advised to call Broadway Travel on 0191 600 0546, lines will be busy.
“Further advice can be found by emailing email@example.com
“Consumers with Atol protected forward bookings, who had flights with Monarch Airlines, will not be able to travel. These consumers are entitled to make a claim under the ATOL scheme.”
A1 Travel was part of the TravelChecker group and was a member of Abta. As well as an office in the UK it operated a call centre in India.
It was among the travel agents that were culled by Teletext Holidays when it originally cut the number of suppliers it worked with to 15 in 2013 before agreeing an exclusive deal with Truly Travel.
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