Monarch Airlines has collapsed and issued a statement in the early morning hours of Monday, October 2nd 2017. British Civil Aviation is launching an airlift operation in order to bring home 110,000 passengers.
According to Independent, passengers booked on the first wave of Monarch flights were already at five UK airports, baffled at being unable to check in, when a brief text arrived announcing their holidays had been wrecked:
“Important! Monarch has stopped operating,” read the message sent out by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). “Please do not go to the airport.”
After 49 years of flying tens of millions of passengers to Europe and beyond, one of the proudest names in travel has collapsed — costing the jobs of 2,750 staff and the holiday plans of hundreds of thousands of travellers.
The CAA said: “Everyone due to fly in the next fortnight will be brought back to the UK at no cost to them. There is no need to cut short your stay.”
The authority’s chief executive, Andrew Haines, Chief Executive of the CAA, said: “We are putting together, at very short notice and for a period of two weeks, what is effectively one of the UK’s largest airlines to manage this task.
The CAA has chartered more than 30 aircraft to bring back Monarch passengers.
The CAA has set up a dedicated website monarch.caa.co.uk, which it says is the best source of advice and information for affected customers, as well as a 24 hour helpline: 0300 303 2800 from the UK, +44 1753 330330 from overseas.
— Dept for Transport (@transportgovuk) October 2, 2017
In a tweet, UK embassy in Athens urged Monarch passengers to not go to the airports.
— UK in Greece (@ukingreece) October 2, 2017
Andrew Swaffield, Monarch’s chief executive, blamed the collapse on the effects of terrorism.
“The root cause is the closure, due to terrorism, of Sharm-El- Sheikh and Tunisia and the decimation of Turkey,” he said in a letter to staff.
Below the CAA statement for Monarch Airlines
Monarch has confirmed that the following companies have ceased trading and now entered administration:
Monarch Airlines Ltd
Monarch Holidays Ltd (ATOL Number 2275)
First Aviation Ltd (ATOL Number 4888) previously trading as Monarch Airlines
Avro Ltd (ATOL Number 1939)
As a result, we are sorry to inform you that, as of 2 October 2017, all future holidays and flights provided by these companies have been cancelled and are no longer operating.
This is an unprecedented situation and because there are up to 110,000 passengers abroad, the UK Government has asked the CAA to coordinate flights back to the UK for all Monarch customers currently overseas. These new flights will be at no extra cost to you.
If you are already abroad you will find all the information you need about your new flight on this website.
If you are due to depart from a UK airport with Monarch Airlines today or in the future, please do not travel to your UK airport as your flight will not be operating.
Customers already abroad
If you are currently abroad and due to return to the UK on or before 15 October 2017 we are making arrangements for you to return home to the UK on a new flight, at the end of your holiday. These new flights will be at no extra cost to you.
We will of course prioritise vulnerable passengers, including unaccompanied minors, and make sure that family groups travel on the same flights.
For further advice and details of your new flight please read I am currently abroad (link for Monarch passengers).
If you are currently abroad and due to return to the UK after this date, please read the additional information section.
Customers yet to travel out of the UK
We are sorry to inform you that all future holidays and flights booked with Monarch are now cancelled as of 2 October 2017.
If you are booked on a Monarch Airlines flight, please do not go to your UK airport, as your flight will not be operating.