Civil Aviation Authority

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Failure of Scheduled Airlines

Information for passengers

Direct Booking with an Airline

Airlines are not included within the ATOL Scheme, so if you booked direct with an airline that has ceased trading you will not be covered. If you paid directly to the airline by credit card you might be protected by Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act 1974. You should check with your card issuer for further advice.

If you booked airline ticket through a travel agent you should speak to the agent. Some travel insurance covers airline insolvency, so if you took out a policy you should check whether this provides cover. 

Booked via an ATOL Holder

If you booked flights together with other holiday arrangements with a travel company that holds an ATOL (Air Travel Organiser's Licence), and received an invoice for these from this company, it is responsible for arranging alternative flights for you so that your holiday can continue. If you are abroad, it should make arrangements to bring you home at the end of your trip.

If you have bought just flights from an ATOL travel company, the company may provide airline failure insurance from which you can make a claim. You should contact the ATOL travel company.

Scheduled Airline Failure Insurance

Some airlines, ATOL holders and travel agents will offer customers either a specific Scheduled Airline Failure Insurance (SAFI) policy or include similar protection within a broader travel insurance product. The type of protection provided may vary depending on the type of policy taken out. A policy may cover the cost of the original tickets purchased or the additional cost of purchasing new flights, such as when purchasing new tickets for travel back to the UK. 


Latest Airline Failures

Sky Europe Airlines

Sky Europe Airlines has suspended operations with immediate effect.

The airline operated scheduled services from London Luton and Manchester to Bratislava, Kosice, Poprad-Tatry, Prague and Vienna as well as several routes across mainland Europe.

Flight bookings made direct with Sky Europe

The CAA’s ATOL scheme does not cover customers who book flights directly with airlines such as Sky Europe.

UK customers who were due to fly back to the UK are advised to make alternative arrangements with other airlines.

easyJet and Ryanair airlines are offering Sky Europe passengers rescue flights

Norwegian and Wizzair also operate on the same or similar routes to Sky Europe.

Customers with forward bookings who booked using a credit card are advised to contact their credit card company about refunds. A credit card referral letter can be downloaded here.

Customers who paid by debit or charge card should contact their card company for advice about full or a partial refund where only part of the journey has been completed. Customers with travel insurance should check their policy to see whether any airline insolvency cover was provided.

Customers booked with tour operators using Sky Europe

UK customers that purchased air holiday packages that included Sky Europe flights from a tour operator should contact their tour operator or travel agent about alternative travel arrangements.

Non-UK customers

Non-UK customers are advised to contact their home country’s aviation/consumer protection organisation or their credit card company for advice and information about whether they are able to obtain refunds or assistance.


For further information, please contact the CAA on 0207 453 6350.

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