Thomson holidays Q&A: why is the tour operator being scrapped?

Its parent company, Tui, has announced plans to scrap the brand

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Thomson Holidays has been helping us Brits travel to exotic destinations like Benidorm for sun, sea and, er, sangria for more than 50 years.

Now those holiday dreams are about to be dashed after its parent company, Tui, announced plans to scrap the brand.

I hear we’re about to bid farewell to a famous British brand?

Yes, sort of. Tui Group – the world’s largest leisure and tourism company – is set to scrap the Thomson brand in Britain as part of its post-merger shake-up.

Surely Thomson is a famous British brand, why do you say sort of?

Thomson began selling cheap package holidays in 1965, attracting families keen to swap rainy British seaside holidays for sunny continental beaches. However, its origins are actually Canadian.

OK clever clogs… why is it being scrapped?

“It’s not a secret that I’m not a fan of having lots of brands,” said joint chief executive Fritz Joussen, who added that it could take a couple of years.

But why?

Tui, which merged with its German parent company last year, wants to slim down and simplify its structure. As well as re-branding, it is set to make up to €1bn (£720m) of disposals – including, which was bought by First Choice in 2006. 

Holidaymakers booking sun breaks to exotic destinations helped boost Tui's overall revenues 7.3 per cent

How’s Tui doing?

Well, especially in the UK where holidaymakers booking sun breaks to exotic destinations helped boost overall revenues 7.3 per cent to €6.9bn in the six months ending March.

It said that 59 per cent of its summer holiday packages had so far been sold. In the UK, people are planning to hit the beaches in Ibiza, Cyprus and Turkey. Further afield, bookings to Jamaica were up 22 per cent and Mexico 37 per cent.