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About ATOL

ATOL (which stands for Air Travel Organiser’s Licence) is backed by the UK Government. ATOL is the UK’s financial protection scheme and protects you when you book an ATOL protected trip with an ATOL holder. It will provide support so that you are not at a financial loss or without assistance abroad if your ATOL holder stops trading.

ATOL was first introduced in 1973, as the popularity of overseas holidays grew. After a number of travel business failures left people stranded, the UK Government realised consumers required protection when their travel providers fell into difficulties. ATOL currently protects around 20 million holidaymakers and travellers each year.

The scheme was designed to cover charter flights and package holidays, and functioned well for years. However, the holiday market changed considerably and the scheme was overhauled in 2008, 2012 and again in 2018 to keep pace with these changes.