Representatives of the British Consulate will be on hand at the Thomas Cook Airlines ticketing counter at Los Angeles International Airport Tuesday to assist travelers left stranded by the venerable travel company’s sudden collapse, airport officials said Monday.
The unexpected closure of the firm that has been in existence since the 1800s is believed to have left hundreds of thousands of travelers stranded at locations around the world.
Media reports out of London indicated that about 150,000 British nationals alone have been left stuck at overseas locations, prompting what’s being called the country’s largest-ever repatriation effort. Some estimates have suggested that a total of 600,000 travelers were left in limbo due to the company’s collapse.
It was unclear how many of those people might be in the Los Angeles area.
According to Los Angeles International Airport, the British Consulate will have representatives on hand at the Thomas Cook Airlines ticketing counter in Terminal 6 from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday to assist passengers.
Heath Montgomery of Los Angeles World Airports, said it’s difficult to tell how many passengers might be stranded in the city because of Thomas Cook’s limited and seasonal flight schedule. The airline provided trips only on Tuesdays and Fridays during the summer months, so there could be passengers trying to depart on those days.
Montgomery said by the time the consulate-general sets up its passenger assistance at LAX, he expects most passengers will be aware of the situation and will have already made alternate travel arrangements.
According to Thomas Cook’s website, the British government and Civil Aviation Authority are “working together to do everything we can to support passengers due to fly back to the UK with Thomas Cook” between Monday and Oct. 6.