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Thomas Cook, robbing b*stards!

(83 Posts)
tillytoodles1 Fri 22-Feb-19 18:45:09

My DH passed away after we'd booked holiday flights, so I offered it to my brother. TC want £100 admin charge per name change and another £47 as the seat prices have gone up.

BlythesEyes Fri 22-Feb-19 19:00:28

That's disgusting...I'd claim full refund from insurance and tell your brother to book with someone else rather that give them any more money.

Haffiana Fri 22-Feb-19 19:03:20

Did you agree to the terms and conditions when you booked?

wowfudge Fri 22-Feb-19 19:10:00

You have told them a family member has passed away, not just asked to change the name?

newmobile Fri 22-Feb-19 19:11:59

We had misspelt a name once our error but was there when agent went on computer and changed it. Got charged 50quid admin charge for 2 seconds work

RochelleGoyle Fri 22-Feb-19 19:14:20

haffiana There's a time to empathise and if you can't manage it why say anything? OP is clearly distressed.

NiktheGreek Fri 22-Feb-19 19:18:01

Perhaps Haffiana works for Thomas Cook.
Shitty answer anyway.

Talkingfrog Fri 22-Feb-19 19:18:20

Sorry for your loss. Those charges seem unfair. I can understand an admin charge,) but given the reason I am sure it could be waives) but if they are transferring the ticket that has already been booked, why does the current price make a difference?

endofthelinefinally Fri 22-Feb-19 19:18:23

I am so sorry for your loss OP. flowers
I think the best thing you could do is ring your travel insurers and claim all your money back. All they need is a death certificate.
Don't even engage with Thomas Cook.
You have so much to deal with, you must be in shock, take the simplest route and maybe save the money for a break with your family in a few months.

PocaMiseria Fri 22-Feb-19 19:18:38

Unfortunately this is standard practice across all tour operators: in our case it was a cruise: one half of the couple dropped dead nine months after the cruise had been booked (and three months before it took place), the bereaved party was charged £500 to change the name of the person accompanying them to that of their sibling.

pumpkinpie01 Fri 22-Feb-19 19:19:02

That’s disgusting have they no compassion, sorry for your loss xx

PocaMiseria Fri 22-Feb-19 19:19:40

PS Sorry for your loss OP flowers

reallyanotherone Fri 22-Feb-19 19:29:30

Ok it’s taken me a couple of reads to figure out what you mean.

At first i thought you were asking your brother to come in your DH’s place.

If you’ve offered the whole holiday to your brother and his family, they want £147 pp? So for a family of 4 it would be £600 more?

That is pretty shitty. I’d phone TC customer services and tell them you’re cancelling, and also tell your insurance company. They may take it up with TC as presumably a name change for them is a lot cheaper than a cancellation.

Ultimately it’s your brothers choice if he wants to pay the extra. If not, cancel and have done.

What’s the excess on your insurance, if you have insurance?

cptartapp Fri 22-Feb-19 19:30:06

I'm looking to book a holiday and a friend behind the scenes says not to book anything with TC in the near future. They're in big trouble apparently.

Debfronut Fri 22-Feb-19 19:41:55

Thomas Cook did this to us to when our son died. Luckily we had only paid deposits but they charged us to take him off the booking and for the car he had asked for. We were going as a large family group. It was a hard thing to cope with at the time

CloserIAm2Fine Fri 22-Feb-19 19:46:59

I’m sorry for your loss and YANBU

T&Cs are fine, but a death is an exceptional circumstance and they should have a bit of compassion. You’re not changing the name out of choice!

Dungeondragon15 Fri 22-Feb-19 19:53:57

I bet it costs them nowhere near that amount to change names so they are actually trying to make money out of your misfortune. That's shameless profiteering.

youaremyrain Fri 22-Feb-19 19:58:22

Sorry for your loss.
Are you on Twitter? This needs publicising, they should be ashamed!

tillytoodles1 Fri 22-Feb-19 20:03:11

We told them that he had died and we hadn't bought insurance yet. It made no difference.

endofthelinefinally Fri 22-Feb-19 20:04:35

Debfronut

I am so sorry. That is heartless.
I experienced the full range of compassion through to downright stupidity when my son died.

flowers

AmIRightOrAMeringue Fri 22-Feb-19 20:06:02

Hi OP sorry for your loss. I'd tweet them and facebook them, keep posting the same thing, this is awful publicity for them

sighrollseyes Fri 22-Feb-19 20:09:37

Awww I'm sorry about this - bloody sucks!
Martin Lewis has just done an article about making sure you book insurance at the time of booking to cover cancellation reasons not just issues while you're away.

onthenaughtystepagain Fri 22-Feb-19 20:11:41

It's one of the reasons to take out insirance on booking, nothing to do with empathy, amazing how many people don't do that, it doesn't cost any more.
A couple we heard of booked a cruise, paid the full amount but he died shortly before the travel date, The widow decided to take the cruise alone and the company wanted her to pay a supplement as a single passennger, the company argued that they would be losing revenue if she travelled alone!

Coulddowithanap Fri 22-Feb-19 20:14:37

Absolutely agree this is why you need travel insurance from time of booking.

So sorry for your loss. You don't need the stress of this on top of everything else at this difficult time flowers

MorskieOko Fri 22-Feb-19 20:16:34

I am so sorry about your dh, but this is what travel insurance is FOR. I am shocked at the number of people who see it as optional and then get upset when they have no protection when something goes wrong.

mkmo Fri 22-Feb-19 20:17:18

trust me, go to the daily mail and you will get a full refund plus compensation

fluffiphlox Fri 22-Feb-19 20:18:43

Obviously it’s very unfortunate but would it still be a good deal for your brother and his family do you think? I think it’s fairly standard practice to charge for changes.

Murphypoint Fri 22-Feb-19 20:21:42

I am very sorry to hear about your husband but one of the first things you should have done is buy insurance. It’s so important.

rumptifizzer Fri 22-Feb-19 20:24:48

Did he have insurance on his bank account or anything like that. Check house insurance etc to see if he was covered like that.

namechangedforholidaystory Fri 22-Feb-19 20:27:59

So I've name changed for this because journalists are hated here, but I'm a genuine user (and have never used MN for a story).

If you want me to, I can put some pressure on. Totally privately, no need for an article (tho obvs happy to do one if you're cross and think they deserve to be shamed).

But if it would help I can have a word and will threaten if necessary because this is appalling behaviour.

Brightburn Fri 22-Feb-19 20:31:08

You need to post on their facebook/Twitter... They'll soon change their tune! I've done it for other big name companies.

MiceSqueakCatsMeow Fri 22-Feb-19 20:32:23

Thomas Cook are the worst. They took our booking for our holiday this year in August in Italy in August last year. Rang up a couple of days ago to tell us they don't have a contract with the hotel anymore or any hotel in the Sorrento area as the hotels have gone with tui. How can they have taken our booking and money when they must have known?
I looked up Thomas Cook and their share prices dropped massively in December. They are something like £389 billion pounds in debt. There were some stories that they want to sell their airline.
They have to give us the money back as it's the law.
I think considering the amount that they are in debt that they will be grabbing money where they can get it. Can you cancel and get a full refund?
I'm sorry for the loss of your husband.thanks

MmaMakutsi Fri 22-Feb-19 20:33:06

Nice offer namechanged - I hope the OP takes you up on it. Holiday companies need to stop this shit and the sooner the better - it's blatant profiteering and usually on the back of some poor sod's bereavement or other misfortune. Shocking behaviour.

BrizzleMint Fri 22-Feb-19 20:37:41

Did you agree to the terms and conditions when you booked?

Haffiana, did you agree to be a dick when you signed up to mumsnet?

Dutch1e Fri 22-Feb-19 20:39:57

@BrizzleMint

gringrin

southnownorth Fri 22-Feb-19 20:41:38

Some of these holiday companies are twats.

Tweet them, they need publicly shaming.

Sorry for your loss OP.

Ooplesandbanoonoos Fri 22-Feb-19 20:41:54

Sorry for your loss.
In a kind of similar situation a friend emailed head office/ director of company directly and the issue was swiftly resolved. Try shaming on social media.

MmaMakutsi Fri 22-Feb-19 20:42:33

Well said Brizzle

Thadeus Fri 22-Feb-19 20:50:54

OP - I have a contact in TC, let me see if I can help.

legolimb Fri 22-Feb-19 20:52:07

I would take it higher up the chain OP.

I am sure that TC don't want bad publicity for the sake of the cost of a few flights.

Slippiepippie Fri 22-Feb-19 20:53:12

What is appalling about that?

I am sorry for your late husband but unfortunately they are not. They are a multi million pound business why would they change the rules for someones husband dying...

Weepatchesoflove Fri 22-Feb-19 20:53:37

I’m sorry for your loss OP and for everyone else who has/has had this problem too.
That’s really good of you namechangedforholidaystory it’s nice to hear of people doing nice stuffs, just because they can.

kateclarke Fri 22-Feb-19 20:59:03

Some people on this thread have had a serious empathy bypass.

I’m so sorry for your loss op.

Thadeus Fri 22-Feb-19 21:00:57

@tillytoodles1 I have sent you a private message

eternalopt Fri 22-Feb-19 21:02:57

Apologies it's a daily fail link, but shows that if they get enough bad press, they'll change their mind.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/travel/travel_news/article-3181069/Bride-s-disgust-Thomas-Cook-mother-dies-firm-refuses-refund-trip-d-booked-Greek-wedding.html

Twitter is your friend here. And local papers etc

Yumsnet Fri 22-Feb-19 21:03:27

I think it was Thomas Cook who was involved in the case with the 2 children dying of carbon monoxide poisoning in Corfu..? And it took them ages to apologise etc.

Sorry to hear they are still heartless bastards.

And so sorry for your loss flowers

PlatypusPie Fri 22-Feb-19 21:06:31

Just a bizarre coincidence I know but had coffee with a group of friends today and 3 out of the 5 of us were formally complaining about recent dreadful experiences with Thomas Cook ! One arrived back yesterday from a holiday in what was essentially a building site, with no pool.

Thadeus Fri 22-Feb-19 21:10:50

Speak with your travel agent, they have the nesesary form that you fill in and then the fees are waived.

macaroniandpizza Fri 22-Feb-19 21:13:39

So sorry for your loss op. I really hope that thomas cook do the decent thing here

Gth1234 Fri 22-Feb-19 21:16:18

I would either pay the money, or just let it go.
It won't be the end of the world, and I am sure you have other priorities.
Is it just flights, or is this part of a much larger holiday arrangement?

Dieu Fri 22-Feb-19 21:19:32

Dreadful. I'm so sorry thanks

eternalopt Fri 22-Feb-19 21:24:42

*What is appalling about that?

I am sorry for your late husband but unfortunately they are not. They are a multi million pound business why would they change the rules for someones husband dying...*

Because it costs them nothing. Log onto a system and change the name. Takes seconds. It's a rip off in normal circumstances. In this situation, it's also heartless

eternalopt Fri 22-Feb-19 21:25:24

*What is appalling about that?

I am sorry for your late husband but unfortunately they are not. They are a multi million pound business why would they change the rules for someones husband dying...*

Because it costs them nothing. Log onto a system and change the name. Takes seconds. It's a rip off in normal circumstances. In this situation, it's also heartless

kateandme Fri 22-Feb-19 21:36:58

BrizzleMint best comment ever.we need to use this on every dickhead comment on here now :D

prettypossums Fri 22-Feb-19 21:41:47

I had to cancel Lufthansa flights when a family member died. I had to provide a copy of the death certificate, but they refunded me in full very promptly, and were very nice about it.

m0therofdragons Fri 22-Feb-19 21:43:58

I'm so sorry for you loss. Unfortunately this is what insurance is for. Holiday companies are not known for their compassion. They will have firm policies in place to follow in these circumstances (this doesn't mean I agree with their policies). I would escalate and hope you get a senior member of staff who will waive the admin charge.

BrizzleMint Fri 22-Feb-19 21:44:27

BrizzleMint best comment ever.we need to use this on every dickhead comment on here now :D

Thank you blush

Potcallingkettle Fri 22-Feb-19 21:47:42

Check your bank account and your husband’s. If you have anything more than a basic account, chances are there is free travel insurance on it.

Boobiliboobiliboo Fri 22-Feb-19 21:49:32

Because it costs them nothing. Log onto a system and change the name. Takes seconds. It's a rip off in normal circumstances. In this situation, it's also heartless

No. They have to pay for IT, software, networking, servers, staff, pensions, training, Internet, electricity, phone line......... to enable that change to be made. And if the flight prices have increased since booking they will charge that as well.

ContinuityError Fri 22-Feb-19 21:50:03

Hate to say it, but a certain budget airline are much, much worse - when a family member died during her holiday they were appalling. Ripped up the return ticket in front of the bereaved husband and then charged him excess luggage for bring her belongings back.

AnneElliott Fri 22-Feb-19 21:51:35

That's awful op. I agree publicity is probably the best way to get this sorted.

Terrible way to treat people who are bereaved.

Slippiepippie Fri 22-Feb-19 21:55:10

I agree its awful and possibly doesnt cost them as much but it is a business and there are terms and conditions aswell as rules and regulations.

Unfortunately they probably thrive off unfortunate circumstances like this where people are losing out on holidays or similar because of the increased prices to change details.

Dungeondragon15 Fri 22-Feb-19 22:02:52

No. They have to pay for IT, software, networking, servers, staff, pensions, training, Internet, electricity, phone line......... to enable that change to be made.

If the time taken to make a change is only a minute then the cost will be nothing like the price they are charging. They are not just recouping their costs, they are profiting out of someones misfortune.

Dungeondragon15 Fri 22-Feb-19 22:04:12

I had to cancel Lufthansa flights when a family member died. I had to provide a copy of the death certificate, but they refunded me in full very promptly, and were very nice about it.

BA refunded me when MIL died too.

Boobiliboobiliboo Fri 22-Feb-19 22:04:15

If the time taken to make a change is only a minute then the cost will be nothing like the price they are charging. They are not just recouping their costs, they are profiting out of someones misfortune.

Part of the charge is to discourage people from booking cheap holidays and then selling them on.

RedSippyCup Fri 22-Feb-19 22:05:13

ContinuityError please tell me that was Ryanair because I already know they are bastards - I can only afford them or EasyJet!

OP im so sorry for your loss flowers that's atrocious, and Thomas Cook are complete wankers. We were delayed mid flight a few years ago, but because (by their own reckoning, my sums were different) we were 7mins short of a 24 hour delay we were not able to get compensation for missing a day and a half of our 7 day holiday. (issue with arrival airport identified mid flight, 'act of god')
Not only did we not see the rep for the entire week as it was end of season so they were skiving off and not doing the advertised sessions to sell over priced day trips, but they didn't even bother to answer my multiple emails about the delay. I'm never travelling with them again. Ever. Wankers.

Ellie56 Fri 22-Feb-19 22:07:25

@BrizzleMint

grin grin

Dungeondragon15 Fri 22-Feb-19 22:08:35

Part of the charge is to discourage people from booking cheap holidays and then selling them on.

If that is the case then there is no good reason at all to charge the same fee in OPs case. As I said, BA refunded me when I sent them a copy of my MIL death certificate.

Jaxhog Fri 22-Feb-19 22:17:13

I am so sorry about your dh, but this is what travel insurance is FOR. I am shocked at the number of people who see it as optional and then get upset when they have no protection when something goes wrong.

Sorry for your loss, but this really does emphasise the need for having travel insurance TC are a commercial organistion, and one in trouble right now. If TC are compassionate, who do you think will be paying for the change? TC won't, we will.

Boobiliboobiliboo Fri 22-Feb-19 22:18:34

If that is the case then there is no good reason at all to charge the same fee in OPs case. As I said, BA refunded me when I sent them a copy of my MIL death certificate.

Legally, they are perfectly entitled to operate within their own terms and conditions.

Lifecraft Fri 22-Feb-19 22:37:40

Whilst the OP has been thru an awful time, as others have said, this isn't a TC problem, it's a lack of travel insurance problem.

If the OP had travel insurance, she would have got a full refund from them, and wouldn't be complaining about TC at all.

And as for people saying what BA, Lufthansa etc did for them, they generally charge a lot more for tickets than TC. You can't expect caviar for the price of fish and chips.

ToPlanZ Fri 22-Feb-19 23:21:10

Hi OP

I'm so sorry to hear Thomas Cook are treating you so badly. They could make an exception given your bereavement but they won't they're an awful company. i won't use them anymore . They left me and hundreds of other passengers stranded in an airport overnight. Every other airline got their passengers out or took them to hotel accommodation. Thomas cook's staff didn't even turn up until hours after the initial delay. One rep freely admitted they wouldn't provide the legal minimum because it would cost them too much.

I did get my money back, it was a struggle even though I was legally entitled to a refund. I was lied to and ignored repeatedly. I had to wage war on their Facebook page to get any movement out of them.

I haven't detailed how badly they behaved in detail as it would be an essay and I don't want to derail. Suffice to say I advise anyone thinking of booking with them not to.

callmeadoctor Fri 22-Feb-19 23:25:16

Sadly, holiday insurance would have made sense.

jocktamsonsbairn Fri 22-Feb-19 23:35:33

I am so sorry for your loss. TC are absolute bastards. I have just finally won some compensation from them after 18 months battling even though I had proof that what i had got was not what I had booked. Good luck and contact ABTA to help although it's all on line.
Years ago when I got divorced I honed Canvas holidays and explained the name change (xH for friend), they asked if I was ok, said there was no charge and they were refunding me £10 on my booking to get myself a bottle of wine on them for being brave enough to take 2 dc on holiday abroad by myself at such an emotional time!! (Friend was only coming for 4 days out of 14). I became aCanvas champion but would warn against TC.

Dungeondragon15 Sat 23-Feb-19 09:43:12

Legally, they are perfectly entitled to operate within their own terms and conditions.

I don't think anyone is saying that they are behaving illegilly. It is a question of whether it is morally fair to profit out of someones misfortune. They will lose customers over this which they may not care about as perhaps they are going out of business anyway but it's not doing them any favours.

Boobiliboobiliboo Sat 23-Feb-19 10:07:56

It is a question of whether it is morally fair to profit out of someones misfortune.

I’m sorry. They aren’t a charity. Death is a fact of life.

And the OP should have travel insurance, which would have covered it. She didn’t. Not Thomas cook’s fault.

We missed a cinema booking last weekend due to someone being taken ill. Non-refundable tickets so £50 gone.

Dungeondragon15 Sat 23-Feb-19 10:15:02

I’m sorry. They aren’t a charity. Death is a fact of life.

Charities donate money. Nobody is expecting them to do that or make a loss. They are just expecting them not to make money out of someone dying.

We missed a cinema booking last weekend due to someone being taken ill. Non-refundable tickets so £50 gone.

Hardly the same thing. Apart from the fact that death is a bit different to sickness, OP isn't asking for a refund and for them to make a loss. She is just asking them to change the name on the ticket which would have a very minimal cost. She would probably be happy to pay the actual cost so she is not expecting them to make a loss. The cinema wouldn't have charged you extra if someone had gone in place of the sick person would they?

MrsPinkCock Sat 23-Feb-19 10:35:53

OP, have you tried posting this in the Legal section?

I just wonder if it might be worth an ask there as to your statutory rights in this situation.

Other types of commercial contract would automatically end on death and you’d be entitled to a refund of any money paid as the contract clearly can’t be completed if one party dies, but I’m unsure why airlines are different (if they are). It’s far away from my area of knowledge unfortunately so I’m not saying they HAVE to refund you (because I don’t know if they do) but maybe someone with more specialist knowledge could help.

azulmariposa Sat 23-Feb-19 12:03:16

@tillytoodles1 I'm sorry for your loss thanks

Check with your bank, as some accounts have annual travel insurance included.

babydreamer1 Sat 23-Feb-19 12:23:43

Tweet at them so all their customers can see how vile they are.

For the utter morons saying she should have gotten travel insurance/did she read the t&c's etc, shut your disgusting mouths, her husband is dead.

MiceSqueakCatsMeow Sat 23-Feb-19 13:32:59

I'm glad you wrote that Babydreamer1. I thought people piling on writing about insurance was insensitive. Also if Thomas Cook was a decent company like some of the others mentioned they would have waived the charge as this is a special circumstance.

tillytoodles1 Sun 24-Feb-19 21:49:27

UPDATE! After talking to then again ( as well as tweeting in Thomas Cook Cares), they've agreed it will be only £50 to change the name and no other fees.

AnneElliott Mon 25-Feb-19 18:33:49

I'm glad you got a result op.

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