Why financial protection matters
You pay for your holiday before it is delivered. If your holiday does not run for whatever reasons you need to know you will get your money back.
Are all holidays protected?
No. If you book a package, as defined in law, then you have the protection of specific regulations: Package Travel and Linked Travel Arrangements Regulations 2018 (Package Travel Regulations). If you book separate or stand-alone products you do not.
How is my booking with VIVID Travel financially protected?
All your bookings with VIVID Travel have the highest possible financial protection.
We have pioneered Gold Standard Trust Accounting which means everything you pay to us is locked up in a separate trust account, basically a bank account which we do not have access to, until after your booking has run. So, for example if you booked a holiday all the money you paid to us would be in the trust account until you have safely returned back to the UK.
This means if we have to cancel your booking the funds are in place to enable a prompt refund, if that is your preference instead of a postponement. As always with VIVID Travel that is your choice, no fuss, no drama.
Note: there are in fact two trust accounts. We have both in place but cannot fund the trust account for ATOL protected bookings until the CAA give us permission to do so. The trust fund for non-ATOL protected bookings (e.g. accommodation only bookings) is fully funded.
Why do you use trust accounts, is ATOL protection not enough?
Packages which include flights booked with a UK tour operator like VIVID Travel will be ATOL protected. ATOL protection engages if your tour operator fails (becomes insolvent) to provide you a refund from a national fund (the Air Travel Trust) and if relevant, repatriation.If your tour operator cancels your trip and you have booked a package (both including flights or otherwise) then the law says very clearly that your package organiser (tour operator) must refund within 14 days. However, as we saw in 2020, many companies just ignored the law and failed to refund. So, no, ATOL protection is strong but not enough.
Why is VIVID Travel not an ABTA member?
VIVID Travel resigned from ABTA (a trade association) in April 2020 during the Covid-19 crisis. We were very unhappy with the position ABTA took during the refunds scandal. ABTA removed any time obligation from their Code of Conduct for their members to refund customers. Even though the law remained clear and in place many ABTA members cited ABTA Guidance as the reason they would not refund or refund by a certain date. Our Managing Director actively campaigned against the ABTA approach and argued that travel companies should simply follow the law, like VIVID Travel. We see no customer detriment in having left ABTA.