Get the latest on our COVID-19 (Coronavirus) response and travel information. Learn more

Our protection promise

our protection promise

Here at On the Beach, we believe in offering you the right protection for your holiday so that you can have the relaxing beach break that you deserve. You can build a holiday that suits your needs and, as all of our flight-inclusive package holidays are fully ATOL protected, you can book with confidence knowing that your money is secure. Plus, with the added protection of our independent trust account and the Package Travel Regulations you can rest assured that both you and your money are being looked after.

ATOL protection

Air Travel Organiser’s License (ATOL) is a financial protection scheme to ensure that, should anything happen to ourselves or our travel suppliers, your money will still be protected. Nothing makes us happier than sending you away on your beach break, but if anything does happen then the ATOL scheme means that you can return home safely, or receive a full refund if your holiday is unable to go ahead. All flight-inclusive package holidays on our website are ATOL-protected, meaning that you can laze on the beach without a worry!

What's the difference between ATOL and ABTA?

Although many people believe that ATOL and ABTA are the same, the two offer completely different services for customers. ATOL is the UK’s financial protection scheme that provides cover for all of our flight-inclusive package holidays. The ATOL protection scheme offers financial protection and peace of mind when you need it most, which is why it’s such a priority here at On the Beach.

ABTA on the other hand, is a travel trade association, membership of which is not compulsory to those in the travel industry. They have established their own specific code of conduct and guidelines that their members are obligated to adhere to as a condition of membership to ABTA. Membership is optional, and many well-known businesses in the travel industry are not members of ABTA.

Secure trust account

When you book a package holiday through On the Beach, you can put your mind at ease knowing that your money is secured. We know how important it is to feel confident that your money is safe and being looked after, which is why the money you pay towards your hotel and transfers is stored in an independent trust account.

Our trust account means your money is safe, as it doesn’t allow us to access these particular funds until you return from your holiday. The benefit of this is that, unlike most other travel operators, we don’t spend our customers’ money to run our business, and so if something were to change where we needed to refund your money – we can do so more easily, and always in cash, as opposed to in the form of vouchers.

Although the cost of your flight goes directly to the airline and isn’t kept in the trust account, keeping the two lots of funds separate allows us to act extremely quickly if we need to. All in all, this means you can book your On the Beach holiday with confidence, knowing that your money is safe and secure.

Package Travel Directive

Here at On the Beach, our customers are at the heart of everything we do, and we know how important it is for you to be able to book with confidence. That’s why we want to reassure you that when you book a package holiday with us, you’ll benefit from the Package Travel Regulations - which offer customers protection in several different scenarios.

In an unpredictable world, it’s more important than ever to understand your rights as a customer, and with the Package Travel Regulations you are offered a number of different protections as standard. These include; ensuring all parts of your trip are provided as planned, assistance if you ever find yourself in difficulty whilst you are away and compensation in the event that anything goes wrong. With these Package Travel Regulations in place, you can enjoy peace of mind that you’ll be protected when you need it most.

Complaints process

Do On the Beach still follow a code of conduct?

We haven’t changed. We’re still the same customer-focused beach experts that we’ve always been. We’ve followed ABTA’s code of conduct since we joined in 2004, and we have no plans to change any of our policies. Our customers are still protected by the Package Travel Regulations, which ABTA’s general guidance is largely based on, and we will continue to offer great customer service by following this good practice.

We still have the same level of Financial Protection in place through ATOL and IPP, as well as our ring-fenced, regulated trust account - more information can be found on our book with confidence page.

How do I make a complaint without ABTA?

We always want holidaymakers to enjoy their perfect holiday with On the Beach, but if for any reason you're not happy with our or our partners' services, our complaints process is largely unchanged. Customers can now refer their complaint to the European Online Dispute Resolution Service rather than ABTA, and escalations will be handled no differently.

We've detailed this process below:

Submitting a complaint

While we were ABTA members

If you wanted to submit a formal complaint this had to be sent through customercare@onthebeach.co.uk.

After our resignation from ABTA

If you want to submit a formal complaint this has to be sent to customercare@onthebeach.co.uk.

Acknowledging a complaint

While we were ABTA members

An acknowledgement would be sent and On the Beach would aim to respond within 28 days (recently extended to 56 by ABTA because of the COVID-19 pandemic.)

After our resignation from ABTA

An acknowledgement will be sent and On the Beach will aim to respond within 28 days (currently 56 due to the COVID-19 pandemic).

Responding to a complaint

While we were ABTA members

If, after two or more responses, the complaint was not resolved, it is referred to a senior member of the Feedback team to review and offer a final response.

After our resignation from ABTA

If, after two or more responses, the complaint is not resolved, it is then referred to a senior member of the Feedback team to review and offer a final response.

Escalating a complaint

While we were ABTA members

If the matter is still unresolved, you can then log your complaint on the ABTA portal.

After our resignation from ABTA

If the matter is still unresolved, you can then refer your complaint to the European Online Dispute Resolution Service.

The mediation process

While we were ABTA members

If through the portal both parties were still unable to reach an agreement, then pre-arbitration would be offered where we have 28 days to engage directly with you to try and mediate a resolution.

After our resignation from ABTA

If through the portal we are still unable to reach an agreement then arbitration will be offered.

The arbitration process

While we were ABTA members

If pre-arbitration fails, then ABTA would automatically offer you arbitration and provide the arbitration form, facilitated through Hunt ADR. The cost to you to submit a claim is £108, which is refunded if the case succeeds.

After our resignation from ABTA

Arbitration is facilitated by Hunt ADR which is the same company that ABTA used, the cost to you for using arbitration is set by On the Beach however we have opted to keep it the same as if you were referred from ABTA and the fee will be returned if your claim succeeds.

Making a decision

While we were ABTA members

Hunt ADR facilitate the arbitration and an independent arbitrator will look at all the information with regard to the case and make a decision based on the facts presented to them. Judgement is then made accordingly.

After our resignation from ABTA

Hunt ADR facilitate the arbitration and an independent arbitrator will look at all the information with regard to the case and make a decision based on the facts presented to them. Judgement is then made accordingly.

ATOL and ABTA FAQs

What does ATOL stand for?

ATOL stands for Air Travel Organiser's Licence.

Is ATOL protection good for customers?

Yes, ATOL protection is good for customers because it ensures that your money is looked after when you book a flight-inclusive package holiday. On the Beach is part of this important UK financial protection scheme.

What does ABTA stand for?

ABTA stands for the Association of British Travel Agents, an organisation now known as The Travel Association.

Is On the Beach a member of ABTA?

No. On the Beach is not a member of ABTA. On the Beach package holidays continue to be financially protected by the ATOL scheme and our ring-fenced trust account. If you book a package holiday with us that does not include a flight (for example if you book a hotel with transfers), all monies paid to us in relation to that holiday will be fully protected by insurance in the event of our insolvency. This insurance protection has been arranged by International Passenger Protection Limited. Please see our terms and conditions for more information about financial protection.

Is ABTA membership compulsory?

No. ABTA is a trade association and membership is optional for businesses within the travel sector. In fact, many large travel companies choose not to be ABTA members.

How are customers affected now that On the Beach isn't a member of ABTA?

All of our flight-inclusive package holiday customers continue to be protected by the ATOL scheme and all of our customers’ hotel and transfer monies in relation to such packages are secured in a regulated, ring-fenced trust account. Our non-flight packages also continue to be financially protected, however this protection is now provided by way of an insurance policy arranged by International Passenger Protection Limited (rather than via a bond held with ABTA).

ABTA is an industry body that offers advice and guidance for members. Membership isn’t mandatory, nor is ABTA a regulator. Its cancellation and refund guidance no longer reflects the current Covid-19 environment that we and other travel businesses are operating in.

If On the Beach is no longer a member of ABTA, are customers still protected?

All of our flight-inclusive package holiday customers continue to be protected by the ATOL scheme and all of our customers’ hotel and transfer monies in relation to such packages are secured in a regulated, ring-fenced trust account.

For non-flight packages, we have replaced ABTA bonding with an insurance policy arranged by International Passenger Protection Limited (IPP). IPP is a worldwide market leader in providing financial failure products to the travel industry. The policy offers the same level of cover as the ABTA protection.

Are ATOL and ABTA the same?

ATOL is a UK financial protection scheme, which makes sure your money is protected when you book a flight-inclusive package holiday. ABTA is a UK travel trade association for tour operators and travel agents and membership is not mandatory.

Are flights ABTA protected?

ABTA doesn’t cover flights. With On the Beach, all of your flight-inclusive package holidays are ATOL protected.

More reasons to book with us…

Book with confidence

Our flight-inclusive package holidays are financially protected with ATOL

Over 1.5 million

happy customers book with us every year

Pay in instalments

& spread the holiday cost up to four weeks before you fly

24/7 in-resort support

from our UK call centre