Is Thomas Cook the worst?

By | Category: Travel news

In a recent study by Which?, the magazine of the Consumers Association, eleven package holiday companies were rated according to value for money, accommodation and customer service amongst other things.

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 The survey was amongst 8,000 customers and Thomas Cook was rated the worst company across all the factors with TUI coming close on the rails. On the face of it neither company has done well but is it a fair representation of the industry?

Other big companies were not included, in particular two online travel agencies who also do some packaging themselves yet Expedia which owns Hotels.com and a number of other brands was. There was no place for On the Beach and Love Holidays, two companies that have been steadily taking business from the more traditional sellers and which are ranked 4th and 5th according to their ATOL bonding figures. Between them they are potentially involved with almost 2.9 million holidays

Amongst the eleven were some rather smaller but still substantial package holiday companies, ones like Riviera, Saga and Trailfinders. (which was considered to be the best company out of the eleven.)  was it that Which? didn’t receive enough responses from holiday companies that were bigger than these three?

Which? also removed any companies that had less than 300 responders as it felt that the sample size was too small, a perfectly reasonable and justified thing to do.

That Riviera was included, (ranked 24th) for example according to its ATOL bonded figures or Saga which is ranked 22nd shows that the chosen companies are not representative. Maybe they are representative of just Which? subscribers or readers.

Therefore claiming that Thomas Cook is the worst and TUI is the second worst is misleading; they are only the worst amongst a small unrepresentative group selected by Which? for the survey.

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