Tens of thousands of Thomas Cook customers still have not been refunded by the Civil Aviation Authority after the travel firm collapsed two months ago.
In October, the government body had reassured the public that all claims made on the first day of its online refund programme would be repaid within 60 days.
But with that two month deadline due to pass on Friday, the CAA said around a third of all customers still have not been refunded.
Why are claims being held up?
Despite paying out nearly £160 million on more than 215,000 claims through the ATOL financial protection scheme so far, the CAA said the remaining claims were taking much longer to process.
The authority blamed the delays on “the poor quality and complexity of the data received from multiple booking systems used across the Thomas Cook Group”.
They also said time was being wasted dealing with fraudulent claims.
The CAA is contacting customers who still have not been refunded, to ask for more information about their claims.
A CAA spokesperson said: “While we would like to process refunds as soon as possible, we are unable to make some payments without verifying all aspects of a submitted claim, and therefore the 60-day claims period is paused while we await the required information.
“This process is in place to make sure the right payments are being made to the right people.
“I would like to reassure consumers that all valid ATOL protected payments will be refunded,” they added.
What to do if your refund is delayed
If you are one of the thousands of customers left waiting for your money from the CAA, this fresh delay could be extremely frustrating.
- Don’t delay. If you receive a request from the CAA for more information, respond as soon as you can so that they can verify the information quickly.
- Check your spam folder. The CAA may have already tried to contact you without you knowing it, if your email account sent their message to your junk folder.
- Stick to official channels. Scammers are reportedly trying to take advantage of customers’ frustration, offering them fraudulent ways of getting their money back.
- Don’t panic. The CAA has committed to refunding all ATOL protected payments made by Thomas Cook customers. Despite the current delay, you will be repaid eventually.