What to do if your Airline goes bankrupt before your flight

With dozen of airlines fighting for just few available slots, it’s no wonder why we often hear about companies that ran out of luck and had to declare bankruptcy. While this is very unfortunate for people who worked inside the company, it’s also the customers who have to suffer the most.

This is especially true for those who bought their tickets in advance and now have to deal with costs of flight cancellations. Is there a way in which they can get their money back? Let’s find out!

In case you used your credit card to book a flight

This might be the safest and quickest way to get a full refund. And there are people out there who claim that modern day technology is the worst... All joking aside, but most credit cards will cover for your expenses, in the case that your airline goes bankrupt ahead of the flight. The only thing that’s necessary is that the flight costs exceed £100. Sure, it might be a drag if your flight falls just short of this number, but look at it from a different angle. Is that really the money you cannot afford to lose? We know that’s not much of a consolation, but it’s better to look on the bright side of life, isn’t it? At least you will be covered for larger expenses, and that’s what really matters.

Find out if your airline is a part of a larger corporation

Although your airline might have gone under, chances are that not everything is lost. In this day and age, almost all major carriers are a part of larger organizations. When a carrier goes bankrupt, it’s usually a smaller offshoot that simply gets absorbed into the parent company. These are great news for travelers, as they can simply swap their flights, with no additional fees to be paid. Unfortunately, larger airlines aren’t always happy to play ball, so getting your tickets swapped might be an uphill battle. Still, if you’ve run out of options, it’s worth giving it a shot.

Speak with your agent before you make the final choice

Let’s face it, this option is more suitable to casual travels than digital nomads who rarely have a plan regarding their next adventure. However, if you are one of those people who like to leave the dirty work to the third party, and let them arrange all of your travel details, it might just save you a lot of money at certain times.

In order to be safe, make sure that your agent of choice has ATOL bonding, a type of protection that covers for all sorts of expenses, including those which occur when companies go broke unexpectedly. Sometimes, you may even get a full refund, including the costs of your hotel and car rental, but that depends on a case-to-case basis.

Make sure your insurance covers for these costs

One would think that airlines rarely, if ever, go bankrupt, but the sheer existence of this insurance policy is an eye-opener. It turns out that these things aren’t as uncommon as one might begin to think, so it can be better to get insured ahead of time, just in case.

However, the worst case scenario is to have your airline of choice go bankrupt while you’re still in a foreign country, so what happens then? Unfortunately, there’s no way around it, you’ll first have to find another airline to get you home, at your own cost. Afterwards, if you have the ATOL protection, you can ask for a refund, and if you’ve paid with your credit card, there’s a high possibility you’ll get your money back. In any other case, not so much.

Naturally, as with every other type of insurance, the secret hides in the details, otherwise known as fine print. Different companies use specific terminology, so it can be hard to perfectly understand everything, and downright tedious if we may add, but if you want to have a peace of mind, it’s recommended that you pay special attention to these important details.


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