Thomas Cook: The holiday firm is to shut 50 of it’s 690 high street stores
Thomas Cook has announced it is closing 50 of its 690 stores on the high street.
Due to take place in March next year, it put up to 400 jobs at risk with a spokesperson telling the BBC: “We hope to redeploy a large proportion of those people.”
The full list of shops shutting down has not been disclosed, but the holiday booking company has explained that those to be shut will be decided on the close proximity to other stores or shops that experienced a fall in customers.
It comes just weeks after Thomas Cook reported a 40 per cent drop in earnings in the UK.
Thomas Cook stores remain an important channel to showcase its holiday offering
Britons are choosing to book their holiday online where they can compare deals, which has affected the high street stores.
Thomas Cook has stated that less than half of holiday bookings (47 per cent) take place in a store, despite online sales only increasing by 27 per cent.
A statement from the company explained: “Thomas Cook stores remain an important channel to showcase its holiday offering and provide expertise and reassurance to customers.
“In 2017, 47 per cent of Thomas Cook holidays were booked in store while online sales in the UK grew by 27 per cent, demonstrating further progress in Thomas Cook’s strategy to become an omni-channel travel business.”
Thomas Cook: High street stores have been affected by low sales
Thomas Cook UK’s director of retail and customer experience, Kathryn Darbandi also said: “We continually review our network of stores across the UK to make sure we’re offering customers the best of Thomas Cook, and it is clear that to succeed we have to operate as a truly omni-channel business.”
It is thought that a mixture of problems in the travel industry have contributed to the stalling growth, such as a spate of fake holiday sickness claims, as well as having to assist travellers who were stranded by Hurricane Irma.
The fall in the pound has also affected the travel firm.
Thomas Cook: The holiday firm is shutting the stores as more book online
Thomas Cook: The stores to be affected have not been disclosed
Thomas Cook has previously revealed that Turkey was its third most popular holiday this year, despite terrorism concerns.
Turkey holidays were badly hit earlier this year, after a club in Istanbul was targeted and resulted in the deaths of 39 people.
Flights to the country were increased by Thomas Cook for the summer 2018 schedule, after an 80 per cent increase year on year for bookings.
Due to its affordability, many families choose it for a cheap and hot summer getaway.