Thomas Cook has cancelled further flights to Tunisia while simultaneously suspending tours of Cairo as civil unrest continues to spread across North Africa.
Following advice from the Foreign Office, the British tour operator confirmed it would cancel all departures to Tunisia until February 6th.
While the FCO released a statement earlier confirming the situation in Tunisia is now “calmer”, the government body warned “violence is still possible” and advised against all but essential travel.
Thomas Cook chief executive, Manny Fontenla-Novoa, said: “The benefits of booking a package holiday come into their own at times like this.”
Tui Travel UK has also joined the Thomas Cook line, advising all departures to Tunisia will remain suspended until the advice from the Foreign Office changes.
The 23-year dictatorship of president Ben Ali ended in Tunisia on January 14th following weeks of escalating protests and violent repression.
A state of emergency is still in place as a transitional government seeks to organise elections, with nightly curfews continuing.
Anti-government protests have spread to Egypt
Events in Tunisia have spurred demonstrations in Egypt, where the rule of ailing Hosni Mubarak has come under fresh attack.
Thousands of demonstrators took to the streets yesterday in protest against the 29-year old dictatorship, with police responding violently in Cairo and Suez.
In response Thomas Cook and other western tour operators have cancelled excursions from the – so far peaceful – beach resorts to historical sites in urban areas.
However, passengers scheduled to travel are urged to continue as planned.
Check the Foreign Office website for the latest information.
Earlier Thomas Cook also confirmed it has ordered 12 aircraft from European manufacturer Airbus.
An agreement for 12 new Airbus 321 will see the planes delivered from 2014, with Thomas Cook also securing options to purchase further A320 family aircraft from 2015.
The new aircraft will be powered by CFM56-5B engines produced by CFM International, a joint venture by Snecma (Safran group) and GE.