Marking the biggest airline collapse in UK history, Britain’s fifth biggest carrier, Monarch Airlines has ceased trading.
With all future flights and holidays cancelled, around 860,000 people have been affected by the airline’s demise.
At the request of the UK government, the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) will send over 30 planes to return the 110,000 British holidaymakers reportedly stranded abroad, in the largest peacetime repatriation in British history.
“If you are currently abroad and due to return to the UK on or before 15 October 2017 we are making arrangements for you to return home to the UK on a new flight, at the end of your holiday. These new flights will be at no extra cost to you,” said a statement by the CAA, which called the situation “unprecedented”.
Those booked on Monarch Airlines flights – around 750,000 – have been told not to go to a UK airport, as their flights will not be operating.
As well as Monarch Airlines, Monarch Holidays and Somewhere2stay Ltd have also ceased trading and entered into administration.
Terror attacks in northern Africa, increased competition and a weak pound have been blamed for Monarch’s failure, which comes after it reported a nearly half billion dollar (£291m) loss last year, the BBC reported.
Monarch, which served 43 destinations on 35 aircraft, becomes the third European airline after Alitalia and Airberlin to fall into administration this year.
According to Reuters, Europe’s biggest airlines including Lufthansa, Air France-KLM and British Airways stand to profit from the failure of these airlines as they get the chance to snap up planes, airport slots and in-demand pilots.
Their liquidations also take seats out of the market, and are predicted to boost consolidation in European aviation.