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Beware early-morning arrivals/departures on Thomson packages

Scotland
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Beware early-morning arrivals/departures on Thomson packages

If you're booking (or have booked) a Thomson package holiday, make sure you check exactly when you will be expected to leave your hotel on your last day. You could be in for a nasty shock.

I certainly was when I discovered that Thomson were perfectly happy to leave a family with a five-year-old son with no hotel room between 10am on our last day and around 4am the following morning. That's right: in 30-degree heat and well into the hours of darkness.

After a lot of coming and going with Thomson - including one 90-minute phone call - the company were unapologetic. This was no mistake and they would not be doing anything to help us in this respect. In short, we were on our own.

Their position was that we had booked seven nights' accommodation and entering our hotel room at 6am on the first day counted as our first night. We had to check out on the Sunday morning and would have no room until we left for our 6.10am flight at around 4am.

I'm glad I checked before I flew. I'm guessing a lot of families will be in for a hell of a fright, hardly expecting this from a supposedly reputable, established company which tell visitors to their homepage: "Every element of our holidays has been designed with you in mind."

In the end (as I was practically forced to do) I contacted the hotel directly and arranged an extra night's stay - at extra expense, of course.

Thomson needs to warn people very clearly - especially those they know are travelling with young children - if there's going to be a very lengthy gap between their hotel check-out and their flight home.

We're paying Thomson to arrange a family package holiday, and we should not expect them to leave us to the mercy of the mosquitos well into the night and without basic human comforts.

West Yorkshire...
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1. Re: Beware early-morning arrivals/departures on Thomson packages

Inconvenient as it may have been - unfortunately this has always been the case.

In general your room is booked for you from sometime around noon on your first day - until 10/11am of your final day.

I have been in this circumstance before now - often the flights are cheaper at those times, which can make up for the awkwardness of managing the situation.

You can always pay the extra to reserve a room, if not in your hotel maybe another one nearby.

Nowadays I won 't ever book a night flight. It isn't worth it to save a few pounds.

I don't think you can blame Thomson for this.

Scotland
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2. Re: Beware early-morning arrivals/departures on Thomson packages

My point is that Thomson, as a responsible tour operator, should give a clear warning when selling such deals. That way, all customers - especially those who may not be as seasoned a traveller as yourself, Annie - can make an informed decision.

Manchester, UK
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3. Re: Beware early-morning arrivals/departures on Thomson packages

I agree, they should have made it clear to you and ideally offered you the option of paying for a later checkout. If I was arriving at 6am I would not expect that to count as the first night, but I wouldn't expect to be able to check into the room until later in the day.

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4. Re: Beware early-morning arrivals/departures on Thomson packages

I agree with you completely, and I am shocked to find this matter has already been raised with Thomson but they have taken no action. We booked 14 nights, arriving in the hotel for about 7am, and expecting the first night following that .

As it turns out, Thomson consider the first night to be the night before we actually arrive, and the last night to be nearly a full day before we actually fly out! This leaves us without accommodation for almost 24 hours. With a family with babies and young children, this is completely unacceptable and places us at risk. Shame on Thomson.

Edited: 29 August 2014, 21:20
England, United...
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5. Re: Beware early-morning arrivals/departures on Thomson packages

I think that it's made perfectly clear on the web site. Yes, it's not stamped all across the page as you book , but that's only one of so many things they need to tell you, hence it's in the small print. It's in the FAQs. To be honest it's obvious. 7 nights is 7 nights, if you want 8 nights then what does the next family in the room do for their first night, particularly if they are coming from somewhere else with different flight times.

Night flights are significantly cheaper, this is one of the reasons why, there's less demand and many people prefer to pay more for day flights. In practice if the hotel isn't full and you have a reasonably common room type then you can probably book a late check out when you get there.

Shame on Thomson? Why. Hotel check in and check out are standard across the world, why expect them to be able to negotiate a different package with each hotel just for their guests, it's not reasonable.

Sunderland, United...
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6. Re: Beware early-morning arrivals/departures on Thomson packages

I totally agree with Skitandoori and would add that with night flights, exactly the same happens regardless of which tour operator you choose. It's not unique to Thomson. On our last holiday we booked an Olympic package which included a nightflight with Thomas Cook. To avoid the situation being discussed on this thread, we paid extra for a day flight with Thomson which meant we arrived half a day earlier than we would have done had we stuck with the Thomas Cook flight. As a result, we had to wait a short while before we could check in which is perfectly normal practice.

Skitandoori is correct, Thomson have nothing to be ashamed of.

Edited: 06 September 2014, 12:02
UK
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7. Re: Beware early-morning arrivals/departures on Thomson packages

We are currently on the last day of our holiday in Tigaki with Thomson. We paid for a late check out (6pm instead of 12noon). Last night we returned to our room to find a card from the rep pushed under our door saying our late check out was cancelled as they had early new-arrivals and need our room for them. Final day's plans are now ruined. Thank you Thomson. As your website says "holidays are precious" - charletons!

Toronto, Canada
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8. Re: Beware early-morning arrivals/departures on Thomson packages

Please do not use this forum as a platform to air grievances about any Airlines or Travel companies, or complaints....this forum is for general questions about travelling with children - for clarification see the first forum post, entitled "Introducing the Family Travel Forum"....In addition, the OP is from almost a year ago

Edited: 03 June 2015, 16:31
UK
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9. Re: Beware early-morning arrivals/departures on Thomson packages

Have just seen your post in what I take to be a reply to my post in June. I'm sorry if you consider my post to be inappropriate for this "forum." However in truth, I didn't even know I had posted on a forum, let alone on which forum I had posted. I simply followed links on the Trip Advisor site after entering the nature of my grievance - was taken straight to the existing conversation, so posted my comments as a continuation. As the true nature of the forum appears to be precious to you, may I respectfully suggest you discuss with officials at Trip Advisor how to avoid people being transported to it "blind" via links.

Whitehaven, United...
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10. Re: Beware early-morning arrivals/departures on Thomson packages

To be fair this has always been the case with package holidays. To be honest we didn't take our kids abroad until the youngest was 5. Our first family holiday was with Thomson to Majorca so short haul and we opted for the early morning flight on the way out 7.30am, stayed in an airport hotel the night before the flight, semi woke and dressed the Kids at silly o clock, they were drowsy happy calm and dozily excited so it worked very well. I wait hate the kids to be over tired and up very late for a flight just to save a few pound, I'd rather not go. On the way home we flew at midday so it wasn't a silly early start and we also weren't hanging around in the sun all day packed and without a room. This also worked very well.