Tour Operator Cox & Kings Shuts Shop, Loses Lakhs & Now Unable To Refund Booking Amount To Customers

by Kanika Sharma
Tour Operator Cox & Kings Shuts Shop, Loses Lakhs & Now Unable To Refund Booking Amount To Customers

India-based tour operating company, Cox & Kings, has now been declared bankrupt. As per news reports, former promoters of the company Peter Kerkar and Urrshila Kerkar, will also be named as defaulters after being unable to repay loans.  The company which had their head office in Kolkata, expanded across the US, Australia and New Zealand in order to operate the business.

Two months back Cox & Kings suspended their US business operations. After a few days, they started laying off staff from their Kolkata office and shut that too. As per reports, there is no information on whether the regional offices in India are functional or not; however, we have confirmed that the Mumbai office is shut, the calls to the Delhi office are going unanswered as well, and the contact numbers of Jaipur and Kochi branches are no longer in service either. 

They announced the closure and along with that made a statement that would not be operating tours to America, Europe, Australia and other parts of the world. After collecting payments of almost ₹10 crore, they have left hundreds of customers fuming.

What’s More?

After the downfall of Thomas Cook Global, UK in September, the survival of various tour operating companies came into question. However, there are certain players that continue to be strong in the market. In fact, Thomas Cook India, which is entirely separate from the Thomas Cook PLC in the UK, registered a significant 21% growth in demand. As per a media news agency, ANI, they have attributed this success to the honeymoon segment. Canada based shareholding Fairfax Financial Holding acquired a 77% stake in Thomas Cook India in 2012 and despite having an impact because of its name, it has been able to maintain a secure financial position.

Picture Credit: DKODING

According to Skift, ‘the India-based tour operator shuttered its Australian and New Zealand. Post that they shut down their operations in the UK in August itself.’ The 178-year-old company is now facing multiple probes for frauds that have been filed against them by customers. According to The Economic Times, ‘Kolkata Police has launched an investigation against tour operators Cox & Kings (India) in a cheating and misappropriation case for allegedly collecting an amount of ₹40 crore from around 75 people “on the pretext of conducting overseas tours”.’

Also read: World’s Oldest Travel Company Thomas Cook UK Declares Bankruptcy; 1.5 Lakh Britishers Stranded Abroad

Picture Credit: CNBC TV 18

Apart from that, after they announced the closure of their Russel Street office in Kolkata, they laid off 2,000 people after not being able to pay their salaries for three consecutive months. 

Cox & Kings might be shutting down but you can save a lot of money by grabbing exclusive deals at the best buffet restaurants in Mumbai!

What Are The Customers Facing Now?

Many people who had booked their trip with Cox & Kings were caught by surprise and left stranded. In fact, certain reports suggested, that it caused such a major inconvenience to people where they had to return from the airport after seeing their names were never mentioned on the list.

Picture Credit: Business Standard (for rep)

There were more than a 1000 customers that who had booked holidays for the upcoming months. As per the reports, they had cancelled over a dozen tours that were to be conducted across the world, which amounted to ₹10 crore.

Also read: Thomas Cook India Different Entity; Won’t Be Affected By Thomas Cook UK Collapse

The Quint reported, that the customers were given a letter by the company that the money will be refunded to them within 90 days. But seeing the number of cases being filed against the company, it hardly seems like that they are going to be able to keep up with the timeline.

Also read: Indian Passport Holders Can Travel To These Places Without A Visa

Unfortunately, for a lot of customers the refund isn’t enough either. The fact that they made bookings well in advance to be able to get the ‘best deal’ for the holiday season now gets defeated. To make the same bookings they would have had to probably pay twice as much.