Public Affairs: CAA hires AS Biss to extend ATOL

AS Biss & Co has secured a three-year contract from the Civil Aviation Authority to better protect consumers against losing money or being stranded abroad when a tour operator goes bust.

The agency has been tasked with urging the Government to extend the Air Travel Organisers' Licensing (ATOL) consumer protection scheme, which is managed by the CAA.

The CAA wants the scheme extended to cover travellers who book 'DIY' holidays and flights directly from airlines.

While package holiday firms are signed up to the scheme, the same does not apply to individual providers, including airlines.

The CAA is concerned that the trend of booking the components of holidays from different companies is putting package holiday providers - required by law to hold an ATOL licence - at a competitive disadvantage.

AS Biss, which has handled the CAA's consumer protection work for the past three years, clinched the contract after a competitive pitch against three other agencies, triggered by a statutory review.

The CAA launched a campaign this year warning travellers of the dangers of booking a DIY holiday.

The CAA reappointed The Waterfront Partnership to handle its safety regulation brief in January.

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