More than 200 Irish holidaymakers on the Black Sea coast have seen their journey home over the next few days clouded by uncertainty following the collapse of a group of travel agents.
Efforts were underway on Friday to bring back nearly 60 Irishmen stranded in Bulgaria after the Aviation Regulatory Commission (CAR), which regulates travel agents, on Friday terminated licenses covering Fanfare, Buzz Travel and Irish Film Tours after it emerged that their parent company was in financial trouble.
An estimated 58 Irish were stranded in Burgas, on Bulgaria’s Black Sea coast, due to the company’s troubles. More than 200 other people who had traveled with the tour operator are due to return home within the next two weeks.
A spokesman for the regulator said the commission was arranging a charter plane to fly to Burgas to fly holidaymakers back to the Republic, where they were due to arrive earlier in the day.
A large number of travelers disappointed when a flight organized by travel agents did not depart from Dublin airport late on Thursday can ask the CAR to have their money refunded.
“Sindaco Ltd, trading as Fanfare, Irish Film Tours and Buzz Travel, is unable to meet its obligations to its customers and CAR has withdrawn its travel agent and tour operator license,” a statement said. press release from the committee.
Trouble with Sindaco, the company behind the three travel agents, arose when Cello, the charter airline used by the Irish firm, refused to carry passengers saying it had not been paid.
Following a meeting with Sindaco on Friday, CAR withdrew its license.
Travel agents are required to post a commission bond as a condition of licensing.
The regulator is using the money as insurance against business failures, to cover the cost of returning stranded holidaymakers and to reimburse those who cannot travel.