Silverbird Travel Ltd, which specialised in holidays to the Far East, has ceased trading – leaving up to 150 customers without a holiday. It’s the sixth long-haul travel company to fail this year.
According to the Association of British Tour Operators (ABTA), the 25-year-old company stopped trading on the 20th of April.
Operating under four other names – Lanyard Travel, Oriental Variation, The Far East Travel Specialists and Royal Orchid Holidays – the firm arranged holidays to destinations across Southeast Asia.
ATOL and ABTA protection
The CAA told Which? Travel that as of Thursday morning, 25 Silverbird Travel customers were abroad, all of them in Dubai. Between 100 and 150 more customers have future holidays booked with the firm.
The company is ATOL bonded, which means those who booked package holidays that include flights could be entitled to a refund. The CAA is making arrangements to bring home those currently in Dubai.
People who booked holidays that did not include flights are advised to make a claim through the ABTA website instead. Claims must be made before 20th October this year.
Higher fuel costs
Five other long-haul travel specialists have failed in 2011, including Caribbean specialist Rion Travel and Grus Travel PTY, which sold tours to Australia and New Zealand.
It’s thought higher fuel costs and last year’s sharp rise in air passenger duty for long-haul flights have made operating conditions more difficult for long-haul specialists.
Travel rights and useful links
For more information on what to do when a travel company fails, plus tips on how to claim back your cash, read our guide to protecting your holiday.