Hundreds of people who bought Olympics
tickets through holiday giant Thomas Cook
have not received them in the post - and have been told they will have to face long queues to pick them up in London.
Some families will have to come to London a day early, and others have voiced fears they will miss the event they've paid for because the queues will be too long to get there on time.
According to the report in the Daily Mail
, one couple, Aaron and Danielle Highley, paid £250 for tickets and a hotel through Thomas Cook, and were mortified to find out they would have to queue for their tickets on the same day of their event as they did not come in the post.
Mr Highley explained to the paper: "I was told that their office (in Marble Arch) would open at 8.00am.
"But the handball event starts many miles - and a transport nightmare away - at 9.30am.
"So we would have to travel into the centre of London, join a very long queue then have absolutely no chance of making it to the Olympic Park for the event we have paid to attend."
He added: "I spent more than an hour holding on an expensive phone line before anyone at Thomas Cook answered the phone.
"In his words he said 'yes sir, there has been a major cock up'. He told me it was chaos."
When he asked about a refund, the staff member said they would only refund the £5 cost of the courier who didn't arrive.
Dozens of customers have taken to Twitter to vent their dissatisfaction, with one writing: "Despite the vast sums of money paid for my #olympic swim tickets @ThomasCookUK still not delivered them and can't get through on phone. Poor.
"Been on hold to @ThomasCookUK 16 minutes listening to 'wonderful world'. Without my Olympics
tickets it most certainly is not."
A spokeswoman for Thomas Cook told the Daily Mail
: "Thomas Cook
can confirm that a small proportion of its London 2012 customers have experienced delays in receiving their Olympic tickets.
"As a result, the company has contacted them to ensure tickets are able to be collected in London.
"Our priority is to ensure our customers take their seat at the Games."
Not a sports fan? Try one of these great escapes:
- Wine and dine in a country retreat
Treat yourself to a food and wine extravaganza at <a href="http://www.the-vineyard.co.uk" target="_blank">The Vineyard</a> at Stockcross, Berkshire, where they're celebrating the British countryside in gastronomic style. Resident UK Sommelier of the Year 2011, Yohann Jousselin MS, will be on hand to explain everything you need to know about the vino on offer. Two nights including breakfast, a seven-course dining experience accompanied by 12 glasses of matching wines, free Hunter wellies and the chance to go pony hacking or clay pigeon shooting costs from £519 per person based on two sharing.</p>
- Break for the border in northern Cyprus
The political isolation of the Turkish North of Cyprus means it's still relatively unspoilt and uncommercialised (this is one of the few places in the world still devoid of Starbucks and McDonalds). Attractions range from beautiful beaches to historical icons, including crusader castles and the ancient Roman city of Salamis. <a href="http://www.cyprusparadise.com/" target="_blank"><span class="s1">Cyprus Paradise</span></a> is offering seven nights' B&B at the family-run Altinkaya Hotel on the outskirts of Kyrenia from £399 pp including flights from London Stansted in August.</p>
- Float away in the Lake District
Where better to escape than a five-star Cumbrian inn on the pretty River Lune? The 17th century <a href="http://sun-inn.info" target="_blank">Sun Inn</a> is running a month-long 'bank holiday' package throughout August for discerning travellers looking for a quintessentially English summer getaway. Nestled in the unspoilt market town of Kirkby Lonsdale, prices start at £230 for a three-night break. </p>
- Go Greek for the Olympics
Book yourself into a Greek villa and get 25 per cent off a selection available in July and August with <a href="http://www.homeaway.co.uk/p498538">HomeAway.co.uk.</a> This villa (pictured), overloking the Cretan village of Elounda, boasts both sea and mountain views and sun terraces galore. From £675 for one week in August, sleeps six.</p>
- Find your own hideaway in the Brecon Beacons
Save up to 20 per cent on several properties still available during the Olympic period with Brecon Cottages. They are proud to say that some of their cottages don't even have TVs or phone reception, let alone wi-fi. Check out <a href="http://www.breconcottages.com/cottage-details/GILFC" target="_blank">Gilfach Cabin</a> in a very sleep hamlet, for £365 per week, sleeping four, or <a href="http://www.breconcottages.com/cottage-details/COACH" target="_blank">Coachingmans' Cottage</a>, perfect for a romantic break, £400 per week, sleeps two.</p>
- Get delusions of grandeur - at a fraction of the price
The <a href="http://www.thewilliamcecil.co.uk/" target="_blank">William Cecil </a>on Lincolnshire's Burghley Estate and The <a href="http://www.elephanthotel.co.uk/" target="_blank">Elephant at Pangbourne</a> in Berkshire are both slashing their prices this season. Between July 26 and August 26 one night at either hotel costs just £20.12 per person, per night, including a full English breakfast, representing a saving more than 65 per cent. Prices are based on two adults sharing a classic room - upgrades are available at an additional cost. Rooms are being allocated to this promotion on a first come, first served basis. </p>
- Go wild on your own island
in the middle of <a href="http://www.tattershall-lakes.com/TouringAndCamping/" target="_blank">Tattershall Lakes</a> in Lincolnshire is an island which now has room for 12 standard tent pitches for Wild Camping. Kick back with just a tent, a camp fire and the great outdoors. Prices for Wild Camping lead in at £99 for six people for a seven-night stay (that's just over £2 a day per person - bargain!).</p>
- Sleep in a castle in Ireland
Whisk yourself away to the 17th century <a href="http://www.hastingshotels.com/ballygally-castle/" target="_blank">Ballygally Castle</a> in County Antrim for only £70 per person per night this summer (based on two sharing). Breakfast and afternoon tea is included. Take in the views (you can see Scotland on a clear day) and a spectacular drive an hour down the road to see the famous Giant's Causeway, one of the UK's natural wonders. </p>
- Set sail in Croatia
Climb aboard a yacht in Croatia on an eight-day sailing holiday for £752 per person (this includes a 15 per cent off deal). There's an experienced crew, so you can help to sail the boat, learn the ropes or simply relax on board. Price includes accommodation on an eight-berth boat, snorkelling equipment, breakfasts and lunches. Book with <a href="http://www.intrepidtravel.com/" target="_blank">Intrepid Travel</a>. There are spaces available on boats from Primosten to Dubrovnik on Saturday 28 July and Saturday 4 August. The same itinerary runs in reverse from Dubrovnik to Primosten.</p>
- Escape to a beautiful summer garden
Once the home of Poet Laureate, Alfred Lord Tennyson, <a href="http://www.grayshottspa.com" target="_blank">Grayshott Spa</a> is set in 47 acres of landscaped gardens adjoining 700 acres of National Trust Land. Special offer: 20.12 per cent discount when stays are taken during the Olympics. Prices start at £307 per person for two nights including three spa treatments. Stays to be taken 27th July – 12th August inclusive.</p>
- Make for Morocco
Bet you've never thought of running away to a rustic-chic Kasbah style hotel set in a rose farm. The Beldi Country Club boasts Atlas Mountain views, restricted wi-fi, no phones and no TVs – encouraging guests to ‘turn off and tune in’. A seven-night Exotic Escapism package costs from £445 per person, including transfers, B&B and a excursion for two to Lake Lalla Takerkoust with local wines and picnic lunch. There's also a traditional hammam and scrub thrown in for good measure. Book with <a href="http://www.boutiquesouk.com/" target="_blank"><span class="s1">boutiquesouk.com</span></a>. </p>
- Find some peace in Scotland
<a href="http://www.devere-hotels.co.uk/hotel-lodges/locations/cameron-house.html" target="_blank">Cameron House</a> on Loch Lomond is a world away from the hustle and bustle of the Big Smoke.Take in the fresh air and wonderful scenery and treat yourself to a special 'triathlon' spa package which includes a Swedish back massage to soothe aching muscles, facial for an athlete’s glow, and a choice of a luxurious file and polish (for either fingers or toes) or a full body energising scrub. Prices for The Carrick Triathlon start from £149.50 per person.</p>
- See picture postcards in the French Alps
The picturesque French Alpine village of Chamonix, which sits beneath the dazzling Mont Blanc, is hosting a series of walks with local photographer Teresa Kaufman in August. Discover little-known areas offering new and original view-points and meet local artists, craftsmen, and chefs along the way. Stay at the Chalet Hotel Sapiniere with <a href="http://www.inghams.co.uk/"><span class="s1">www.inghams.co.uk</span></a> from £499 per person, saving £100 each, departing 1 August 2012. Price includes 7 nights, return flights from Gatwick. ransomers, packed lunches and free afternoon tea and cakes. </p>
- Go walking on Jersey's shores
<a href="http://www.celtic-trails.com" target="_blank">Celtic-trails</a> is offering a six-night walking break in Jersey from £525 per person based on two sharing, including luggage transfers, taxi transfers between accommodation and path where necessary, walk pack with maps and guidebook. Take the Jersey ‘Round Island Walk’, a 48-mile circuit of the island's beautiful coastline. Stay in three- and four-star guest houses en route. There are lashings of cream teas and wonderful seafood suppers to boot.</p>
- See an Italian opera in Tuscany
<a href="http://www.winetours.co.uk/tours/view/180/independent-opera-puccini-festival" target="_blank">Arblaster & Clarke Wine Tours</a> is offering a four-night opera holiday during the Puccini Festival in Lucca, Tuscany from 9 – 12 August for £799 per person. Staying in a traditional four-star hotel in the centre of Lucca, you'll be celebrating some of Puccini’s much-loved works at the completely rebuilt lakeside theatre near Puccini’s house at Torre del Lago. First class tickets to the opera of your choice and the option of attending La Bohème, Madama Butterfly or Verdi’s La Traviata are included. Extra tickets are available on request. </p>
- Hide away in the mountains of Sicily
Escape to Sicily's lovely Madonie mountain range and enjoy fresh air, clear blue skies and local organic produce. Stay at Ai Mulini, an 18th century farmhouse with a panoramic pool, set amongst rugged cliffs and hidden villages. The farmhouse is just outside Polizzi Generosa, and beaches at Cefalu are around 40 minutes' drive away. One week in July or August starts at £1700 (sleeps eight), reduced from £1900. Further information from <a href="http://www.soloSicily.com " target="_blank">solosicily.com</a>.</p>
- Step back in time in the Italian Alps
If you want to be really remote, make for the North West Italian Alpine village of Champoluc, which dates back to the 14th century. It is only accessible by an old rustic trail (your luggage is carried for you by a four-by-four) - and the walking is spectacular. Live it up in rustic luxury at <a href="http://www.hotelleriedemascognaz.com/" target="_blank">Hotellerie Mascognaz</a>, which perches high above the village. Foodies will not be disappointed: Jambon de Bosses and Fontina cheese herald from here. From €230 per night per couple, half-board. </p>
- Oh this year, we're off to sunny Spain...
Head for the sun and indulge in an active family break at<a href="http://www.prestigeholidays.co.uk/La-Manga-Club/" target="_blank"><span class="s1"> </span><span class="s2">La Manga Club</span></a>, Spain. Former Olympic athlete Nick Buckfield will be hosting a variety of athletics and fitness courses (but don't worry - they're not compulsory). A family of four sharing two interconnecting rooms for a week at the five-star Hotel La Manga Club Principe Felipe in August costs £4,120 with Prestige Holidays and includes kids clubs and free meals for children under five, return flights from Gatwick and private transfers.</p>
- Snap up a cut-price escape to the Maldives
We just had to put a dream holiday in this gallery - if only to admire the picture. <a href="http://www.thomson.co.uk" target="_blank">Thomson</a> is offering seven nights all-inclusive at <a href="http://olhuvelimaldives.com/island/island.php" target="_blank">Olhuveli Beach & Spa Resort</a> in the Maldives from £1,619 per person (saving £477 each), based on two sharing. Departuring 29 July, the price includes return flights from Gatwick, accommodation in a deluxe room overlooking the beach and speedboat transfers. The only drawback is you won't want to come home.</p>
- Disappear to Devon
Take in the views over sparkling Lyme Bay, stroll through the rolling green hills of the glorious Sid Valley and explore the Jurassic Coast. Stay at <a href="http://www.sidmouth-harbour-hotel.co.uk/" target="_blank">Sidmouth Harbour Hotel</a> for £60 per person per night, relax in the garden by the heated outdoor pool, unwind on the sun terrace with a cool drink and simply enjoy the view... bliss.</p>
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