Thomas Cook’s sunny heart may have dipped below the horizon after 178 years, but it’s left a glow that will never dim.
This week’s TTG is not only full of words of sympathy from the industry, but genuine opportunities companies are creating to support the brilliant people that powered the business.
Some have already taken solid action, such as Holidaysplease, which is offering Thomas Cook staff the opportunity to stay together in the same office.
The industry knows that so many of those team members will go on to improve other travel businesses across the UK and in-resort.
The company’s end may have seemed brutal, swift and unforgiving. But it wasn’t decided in a City boardroom last weekend.
Forget, too, the nonsense you might hear in the national media about Thomas Cook’s demise being prompted by the so-called death of the travel agent or the package holiday.
Thomas Cook had evolved immeasurably over its 178-year-history, as Dave Richardson – author of Let’s Go! A History of Package Tours, and a former TTG staffer – has documented for us.
But in recent years, its evolution had simply been too slow for a business that needed to adapt faster, turning it into a lumbering giant saddled by debt.
Adapting to the ever-faster pace of change is the biggest challenge for all of us in travel, TTG included.
Thomas Cook’s army of workers in Peterborough and beyond had been playing its part – too bad that the strategy and the investment were not up to the task, held back by the debts that ultimately killed the business.
So Thomas Cook is no more. But the people that gave the business such heart will go on to benefit and enhance every corner of the travel industry that remains.
They’re among the many reasons why the sun will never truly set on the spirit of Thomas Cook.