If you're booked on an inbound-only Monarch flight between now and Sunday and have yet to fly out on another airline, the aviation regulator is now warning you CAN'T expect to be flown home for free.
The new guidance from the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) contradicts previous assurances that passengers would be repatriated to the UK even if they flew out on another airline after Monarch collapsed, so long as they were due to return on Monarch before 16 October.
The CAA has apologised if any of its previous advice was "unclear", but it's now advising affected passengers who've yet to fly out to make "alternative arrangements" and contact their travel company.
It’s understood no one who’s already flown out will be left without a flight home – though if you have any difficulties, let us know at email@example.com.
How has the CAA advice changed?
Last week, the CAA told us that anyone flying back to the UK before 16 October would be put on a CAA repatriation flight, even if they flew out after Monarch collapsed.
It confirmed this advice to us on two separate occasions early last week and its Twitter account also gave out the same information to Monarch customers.
But earlier this week we were contacted by several MoneySavers who were confused because a new section had been added to the CAA's Monarch information website which contradicted this.
The CAA's site now states: "If you choose to travel out from the UK after the administration was announced at 0400 on Monday 2 October, and your return flight to the UK is with Monarch, you should make alternative arrangements. If you are ATOL-protected, you should speak to your travel company who will be able to offer further assistance."
When we contacted us the CAA about this contradiction, a spokesperson told us: “We apologise if any of our advice was unclear and any passenger who believes they have been wrongly advised should call our call centre on +44 1753 330330 for further advice.”
"Our policy is that nobody should put themselves in need of repatriation and therefore anyone who departed the UK after the date of administration, relying on a repatriation flight to return to the UK, will not be automatically eligible for a repatriation flight."
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I'm one of the passengers affected - will I get a flight home?
Here's the latest situation acccording to the CAA:
- Flew out with another airline before Monarch collapsed and had an inbound-only flight before 16 October? The CAA says you WILL get a free replacement flight home.
- Flew out with another airline after Monarch collapsed and had an inbound-only flight before 16 October? The CAA says you should ring its call centre on +44 1753 330 330 to discuss your options. We understand that no one who’s already flown out will be left without a flight home.
- Haven't yet left but booked to fly out with another airline and back with Monarch before 16 October? The CAA says you shouldn't rely on getting a replacement flight back.
It may be worth calling the CAA for further help anyway - particularly given it's now changed its advice. Otherwise you may need to make alternative arrangements. Ask your travel insurer, but if your Monarch flight back was booked separately you may not be able to get a refund for your other travel plans.
- Due to return on any inbound-only Monarch flight on or after 16 October? You WON'T be put on a replacement flight by the CAA. See our Monarch help guide for more info.