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Laurie's complaint against Tui

Laurie Foster


Booked holiday to Egypt, forced to cancel and refused to give us money back

Complaint against Tui

Last January my partner booked a holiday to Hurghada for this March as a surprise for my christmas. He paid a £500 deposit which included insurance at £100, and chose to book with Thomson well in advance for the enhanced security and customer service. After the terrorism issues in Tunisia, we discussed his plans however we were both very concerned about the safety of Egypt and did not want to risk our own safety. We called Thomson to ask if we could cancel the holiday on the basis that we feared for our safety, and not just on the basis that we changed our minds. We were told if we cancelled we would lose our £500 deposit, however we could pay £100 to change the destination. At this stage we were disappointed in this response given the reason for our request. We decided on a holiday to New York instead so called Thomsons with our decision but were then old we couldn't change the destination to New York as it was a different type of holiday and not booked in the same way. Again, a poor response. We did not want to waste our money then choosing a third destination for the sake of not losing our deposit, therefore my parents kindly offered to take the booking for us. We contacted Thomson again and we were then told we would have to pay £200 for that - £50 per person per change. Thomson showed no sympathy over the situation we were in. After the plane was shot down in Egypt, and holidays to Sharm El Sheik were beginning to be cancelled/changed at no cost, we were even more concerned for our safety going to Hurghada. We contacted Thomson every week the amount of holidays cancelled continued to increase, along with the guidance from the foreign office regarding flights to Sharm El Sheik. Thomson started to become slightly understanding with our situation and advised us to wait as long as we could before paying the final amount incase the travel information changed. However, the remainder of the holiday had to be paid by the 19th of December. We called Thomson to ask if this could be delayed at all given the situation but were then told the area we were going to wasn't affected so they would take no action on our holiday. Given that Hurghada is the second largest tourist area in Egypt we both, along with family members, could not understand how this area would still be safe. My partner and I went into the Thomson store to discuss the matter with one of their representatives. The manager within the store was completely unsympathetic and verged on rude. We asked if she would go to Hurghada given the situation and she dodged the question, refusing to provide an answer which speaks volumes. We were forced to make a decision then to cancel and lose £500 or pay £200 for my parents to take the booking. There was no cooperation at all in relation to these fees. The service provided was a disgrace. A mere 3 weeks later and there is an attack at a tourist hotel in Hurghada, where tourists were in fact injured. As soon as this was publicised, I called Thomson again. I was told nothing has changed for Hurghada holidays and because we cancelled the booking 3 weeks ago we would not get our money back. I asked the question '3 tourists have been stabbed and you're saying it is safe to go?' and was told 'we can only go on what head office say'. Having lost all respect for Thomson and their representatives, I left a comment on their Facebook page to advise they have provided the worst customer service and I most definitely would not book a holiday with Thomson again. Immediately I had a response from one of their representatives asking if they could help so I relayed the series of events a further time. The reply I received simply said "I'm sorry that you feel that way. We are currently waiting on an update regarding the current situation in Egypt". Yet another example of disgraceful customer service! No apology for the service given, only an apology that I feel that way which is patronising to say the least. And no offer to give back the money we lost through no fault of our own.

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  • Comments (1)

Gem Clarke | | VERIFIED

I have had exactly the same thing from Thomas Cook. Booked my holiday to Sharm el Sheikh in August 2015 for June 2016. When the events happened in Sharm in October I began to feel unsafe traveling. I have now lost my £400 deposit and cancelled the holiday, 1 week later they are offering cancellations with a full refund to customers. Have you had any luck getting your money back?
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