21 April 2020

Bringing our colleagues home

Interview with a rep about his return from Cape Verde and his first flight with TUI

Mohamed Aymen Golli, TUI DX rep

In the largest repatriation campaign in TUI's history, more than 200,000 holidaymakers were taken back home. But not only guests were brought back, but also almost 4,000 TUI employees. These included colleagues from TUI Destination Experiences, but also the employees of TUI hotel brands such as Robinson or TUI Magic Life. With a great deal of commitment and passion, they stayed in the various holiday destinations to arrange everything for our guests and take care of them. After finishing that, they had to be transferred back home as quickly as possible. On 7 April, a one-off TUI fly flight took place: Hanover – Sal – Boavista – Tunis – Istanbul – Hanover was the route of flight X3 6013, which took off with two TUI fly crews.

On board was TUI DX rep Mohamed Aymen Golli. We spoke with him about this unique return flight from the island of Sal to his home country Tunisia.

Aymen, what is your job at TUI? How long have you been with the company?
I am the Service Delivery Team Manager in Sal Cape Verde and I have been working with TUI since 2013.

When and how did you leave Cap Verde?
We had our last guest repatriation flight on the 23rd of March and it was me and another Tunisian colleague from the airport team who couldn’t leave the island due to visa restrictions and border closure in our country. At that point, we knew it would be hard for us to go home, at least until things get back to normal. But in the meantime, there was a lot of work going on behind the scenes of TUI without us knowing. Some days later, our destination manager Dawn Fisher confirmed to us that TUI had arranged a repatriation flight for us and some other Turkish colleagues from Robinson. It was an amazing surprise, knowing how hard it is to organise something like that.

The flight left the island of Sal to fly to Boa Vista and then we flew straight to Tunisia. The flight took about five hours which was crazy as it took me nearly 27 hours to get there at the start of the season. The cabin crew was so helpful during the whole journey – and actually this was my first flight on a TUI aircraft.

By the time we landed in Tunisia, I was really happy and I want to highlight my deepest thanks for everyone involved.

What happened after the landing and where are you now?
Upon arrival we were met by government officials who helped us to do a quick passports control and then they took us to quarantine facility where we have spent one of two mandatory isolations. For now, we can’t leave our flats and food and drinks are being delivered to us. We have also been tested and are still waiting for the test results.

Are you in touch with your colleagues and how?
I am still in touch with my destination manager who is keeping me updated. I am in touch with some of my team and some other colleagues mostly via messenger as well. I try to keep myself updated about the whole situation so I make sure to attend the virtual town-hall meetings, I check our smile TUI DX intranet and of course I attend some e-learning offers to keep myself busy and learn something new.