(CNN) – Thousands of travelers are stranded after British tour operator Thomas Cook abruptly shut down.
The demise of the iconic company is triggering the largest peace-time repatriation in the history of the United Kingdom.
Some 600,000 travelers are reportedly stranded worldwide.
The UK Transport Secretary and Civil Aviation Authority said they are “working round the clock” to help get travelers home.
Repatriation flights only apply to travelers whose journeys originated in the UK.
For those who don’t qualify, the UK Aviation Authority is advising travelers to check with credit card companies, banks, and travel insurance companies to see if they qualify for refunds.
The aviation authority will be running more than 1,000 flights over the next two weeks to get people home.
Thomas Cook’s CEO apologized to customers and employees, calling it a “deeply sad day.”
The company has been in business for 178 years and employed more than 21,000 people.
All those jobs are now at risk.
(This story was originally published on September 23, 2019)