A DREAM holiday to Orlando is in ruins for a group of friends after the collapse of travel giant Thomas Cook.

Plans to visit Disney World, Universal and Busch Gardens have been placed on hold after the shock discovery just two days before they were due to fly to the States.

Ollie Bull, his girlfriend Hannah Stride and friends Thomas Walker and Charmaine Arogundade paid a total of £7,700 for the holiday of a lifetime.

They had arranged time off work for the two-week trip and are now at a loss as to what to do.

Ollie, a 22-year-old self-employed dry-liner from Poulner in Ringwood, said: “We booked the holiday 18 months ago and we finally paid it off in July.

“We were really looking forward to it and it was going to be our last holiday before we move out because we all live at home with our parents at the moment.”

The group planned to stay at the Baymont Inn Suites in the International Drive area of Orlando and to visit all the major theme parks.

“Even our theme park tickets are part of the package, so we’re not sure what to do now,” said Ollie, whose 22-year-old girlfriend is a Southampton University student who also lives in Poulner.

“It will be a long time before we get our money back so it doesn’t look like we’re going to be able to go anywhere this week.”

He said their friends, who are both aged 23 and live in the Charminster area of Bournemouth, are also devastated about the loss of the holiday.

All Thomas Cook holidays and flights have been cancelled with immediate effect, leaving 600,000 Thomas Cook travellers stuck at 53 destinations in 18 countries.

Britain’s biggest peacetime repatriation is now under way in a bid to bring home the 150,000 Brits affected.

The operation has been launched by the Civil Aviation Authority and is almost twice the size of the repatriation effort required when Monarch went bust in October 2017.

It will involve around 1,000 flights and the final cost is expected to be around £100 million.

Charter planes have been brought in and only holidaymakers with return flights booked until Sunday October 6, will qualify for a free flight home. On September 30, one week into the repatriation process, the CAA will launch a service which will seek to process all refunds within 60 days of full information being received. Further details will be given at thomascook.caa.co.uk