Holiday prices slashed as EAG crisis continues

8th February 2005, Comments 0 comments

8 February 2005, AMSTERDAM — The financial crisis around the ExelAviationGroup (EAG) is leading to slashed prices on holidays as travel agency TUI Nederland seeks to fill empty seats on HollandExel flights.

8 February 2005

AMSTERDAM — The financial crisis around the ExelAviationGroup (EAG) is leading to slashed prices on holidays as travel agency TUI Nederland seeks to fill empty seats on HollandExel flights.

The travel agency — which owns Holland International, Arke and Kras Reizen — is offering discounts of EUR 300 to 700 on advertised prices. The new prices will be available from today on flights departing from Amsterdam.

TUI director Steven van der Heijden said the lower prices will apply to holidays in Mexico, Cuba, the Dominican Republic and Brazil. Negotiations still continue in relation to trips to Asia, including Bali in Indonesia.

A two-week trip through Mexico has been cut in price from EUR 1,098 to EUR 649 and the same price is being offered for a two-week round trip to Central America. A nine-day beach holiday in Brazil is going for just EUR 369, reduced by EUR 320.

TUI is also offering a nine-day trip to the Dominican Republic and has slashed the price by EUR 400 to just EUR 559. A trip to Cuba for nine days is priced at EUR 559, a price cut of EUR 450.

The travel agency bought at rock-bottom prices thousands of seats on Holland Exel — which is owned by EAG — flights after competitor Thomas Cook cancelled flights on Friday and transferred its clients. TUI will now offer 10,000 extra holiday specials in the next six weeks.

But it is not all good news for travellers, with holidaymakers who booked with Thomas Cook encountering problems on their return flights. Passengers are being forced to pay large amounts for a return flight or are being diverted on their final leg.

The news comes after major EAG shareholder Erik de Vlieger said last week the embattled company could soon file for debt protection. His comments sparked the resignation of interim director Bart Drechsel, who claimed De Vlieger's comments put a capital injection in jeopardy.

Eindhoven Airport also warned passengers with AirExel tickets last week that the flights of the regional airline were "extremely uncertain". AirExel is also owned by EAG and flies to several European cities from Eindhoven and the Maastricht-Aachen Airport.

And tax officials auctioned off last week office furniture at AirExel's headquarters, based at Maastricht Airport, to help pay off the airline's overdue tax bills. Eindhoven and Maastricht airports are also owed significant sums of money by AirExel.

De Vlieger has blamed EAG's problems on continued negative publicity and judicial investigations, having been arrested last month on allegations he was involved in extortion at an Amsterdam café. De Vlieger is now relinquishing control of his Imca Group real estate, aviation and media empire.

Click here for a list of links to TUI's travel agencies (in Dutch).

[Copyright Expatica News 2005]

Subject: Dutch news

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