The secret code on flight tickets that mean you’re MUCH less likely to get your money back

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Customers of an insolvent travel company have been told the likelihood of getting a refund on pre-booked flights depends on their ticket codes.

The STA Travel Group collapsed into voluntary administration in August after the COVID-19 pandemic brought the industry to a standstill.

Would-be travellers who purchased flight through the company and held tickets with a triple zero at the start of the code were at ‘greater risk’ of not being honoured, because cash was likely never transferred to the airlines.

Those with International Air Travel Association tickets that start with any other three digit number are ‘more likely’ to be honoured, administrator Jason Tracy from Deloite told company creditors on Wednesday, The Daily Telegraph reported.  

Customers of STA Travel, which has gone into voluntary administration, have been told the likelihood of having their bookings honoured depends on what code is on their flight tickets

Customers of STA Travel, which has gone into voluntary administration, have been told the likelihood of having their bookings honoured depends on what code is on their flight tickets

But Mr Tracy advised customers to follow up on bookings with airlines, hotel and tour operators, even if their ticket has a triple zero code.  

STA Travel was founded by two Australian backpackers in Melbourne in 1979 and originally stood for Student Travel Australia.

It later rebranded to become Student Travel Association and then Start The Adventure.

In a statement parent company STA Travel Holding AG said the pandemic had ‘brought the travel industry to a standstill’. 

‘Sales have not picked up as anticipated, due to consumer uncertainties, further restrictions and renewed lock-down measures, which are expected to largely continue into 2021,’ it read.

‘As a consequence, STA Travel Holding AG, is filing for insolvency.’

STA Travel customers with booked flights that contain a triple zero at the beginning of the ticket code are 'at greater risk' of not having their bookings honoured because cash likely wasn't transferred to the airlines (stock image)

STA Travel customers with booked flights that contain a triple zero at the beginning of the ticket code are ‘at greater risk’ of not having their bookings honoured because cash likely wasn’t transferred to the airlines (stock image)

Australia and New Zealand were top markets for the travel company and drove bookings for students, gap year students and backpackers. 

The company has around 200 offices and employed 2,000 staff worldwide however Mr Tracy said all but three workers had been made redundant. 

He also revealed in a meeting of company creditors that employees were owed $2.5 million in outstanding entitlements.   

In a statement announcing insolvency parent company STA Travel Holding AG said the pandemic had 'brought the travel industry to a standstill' (woman pictured at Sydney Airport)

In a statement announcing insolvency parent company STA Travel Holding AG said the pandemic had ‘brought the travel industry to a standstill’ (woman pictured at Sydney Airport)

 

 

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