Holidays from the major UK Tour Operators

Who they are

TUI Travel PLC is one of the largest leisure travel companies in the world. It was formed in 2007 with the merger of the Tourism division of TUI AG and First Choice Holidays PLC. TUI AG had previously acquired Thomson Travel in 2000. TUI Travel PLC is listed on the London Stock Exchange and has its headquarters in the UK.

What they do

TUI Travel PLC is the owner of around 250 brands, including familiar names in the UK travel market like Thomson Holidays, Crystal Holidays and First Choice. TUI brands operate in around 180 countries and employ over 50000 people. The company sells around 30 million holidays a year worldwide. It has important markets in Europe, Asia, North America, Latin America and Australasia. TUI provides a wide range of packages to the wholesale travel market. Brands owned by TUI Travel are also household names abroad. Airtours is the most important operator in the luxury market in Germany. Fritidsresor is the largest tour operator in Sweden.

Well-known UK brands

The sheer size of the company combined with the breadth and variety of around 250 holiday specialists means TUI Travel operate in almost every conceivable area of the travel industry. Among the best-known names here in the UK are First Choice, Crystal and Thomson. First Choice now specialises exclusively in all-inclusive. Thomson Holidays was founded in 1965 and was instrumental in the popularity of beach breaks abroad. Thomson now offers packages worldwide and has 650 high street stores in the UK. Crystal Holidays is the UK’s most important ski operator and also specialises in beach and activity breaks, adventure breaks and lakes and mountains holidays.

Specialist travel companies

The TUI Travel Group owns a wide range of specialist companies focusing on everything from ski tours and yacht charters to sports events and volunteering. The group owns dozens of companies specialising in beach and ski holidays, cruises and luxury packages. Adventure specialists include Quark Expeditions. TUI also own niche market companies like The Moorings, Ranger Safaris and Real Gap Experience.