The CAA has issued guidance for charities offering or selling flights and flight inclusive trips as part of their events or fundraising activities, and makes clear that ATOL regulations intended to protect consumers apply. This means a charity may need an Air Travel Organiser’s Licence unless certain exceptions apply.
The CAA advice explains the criteria for obtaining an ATOL, but provides guidance for charities seeking an alternative route to offering flights as part of their activities. No ATOL is needed where flights or flight-inclusive trips are organised by another business or organisation that is itself ATOL-registered. In these circumstances, the charity must be authorised by the ATOL holder to act as an agent, and have a written agreement to this effect.
The CAA guidance presents other options for charities that do not want to become ATOL holders, including becoming members of an accredited body, whereby the body allows the charity to trade under their ATOL, or applying for ATOL membership through a franchise organisation. These may be cheaper options for the charity.
Regardless of the route that a charity takes, the information it provides must comply with ATOL standard terms, including its promotional materials, terms and conditions and other documentation. The guidance makes clear that any money to be paid for a flight or trip must be detailed by the charity, including how much is a charitable donation and how much is for an ATOL protected flight or trip.