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“My Tour Operator is not Responding to my Complaint – What can I do?”


One of the most popular reasons people visit our website is because they have written to complain to their tour operator, but they have not received a response from them.

Luckily for consumers, if the tour operator is an ABTA member, there are very strict rules relating to the way travel agents and tour operators must deal with their customers.

ABTA stands for the Association of British Travel Agents and they have the power to fine their members if they do not uphold industry standards. Not all tour operators are members of ABTA, but most of the big ones are - such as Thomas Cook, First Choice, Virgin and Cosmos.

Freephone: 0808 145 1353 or fill in the enquiry form above.

Time Limits on Holiday Complaints

Under the ABTA Code of Conduct, the travel agent has 14 days to acknowledge your correspondence and 28 days to provide a full response.

If you have not had an acknowledgement within 14 days and a response within 28 days, we suggest you call your tour operator to request that they respond immediately. If they still do not respond within the next 7 days or you cannot get through to them, we suggest that you contact ABTA as soon as possible who have the power to fine the tour operator if they still fail to provide a response.

What to do if My Travel Agent has not Responded Properly

Unfortunately, if you feel like your travel company have not responded properly to your concerns, it will be a lot more difficult to enforce a detailed response from them.

A common concern that people contact us about is where a letter of complaint has been written to the tour operator about food poisoning. Quite often the letter is written over concern that other people travelling to the hotel might also experience illness.

However, customers are often shocked to find in their response that the tour operator has claimed that the illness was not food poisoning but illness caused by change of diet, excessive eating or exposure to too much sun.

If you have not received a full response from the tour operator our specialist holiday lawyers can certainly help if you were injured on holiday or suffered from illness.

If you did not have an accident or illness on holiday, you might want to consider contacting your local trading standards authority, the Citizens Advice Bureau, or a solicitor that deals in contractual complaints.

Alternatively, you might want to consider using the ABTA Arbitration process or the Small Claims court to further your complaint.

Note that you have one year to use the ABTA Arbitration scheme; 3 years to bring a claim in the English courts for accidents and illness (if you travelled with a UK tour operator) and 6 years for breach of contract not involving and accident or illness.

Whatever you do, you should aim to complain as soon as possible in order to ensure that whatever has happened is nipped in the bud. It is little use complaining about poor standards of hygiene at the all-inclusive buffet after you have returned home with food poisoning. If you did not complain on holiday, the tour operator is likely to say whatever you are complaining about cannot have been that bad.

We can be contacted today for a free consultation about injuries or food poisoning suffered on package holidays. We deal with cases under a no win no fee funding arrangement.

Below is a link to ABTA’s advice to people that want to complain about their holidays.

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