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Comair suspends Kulula and British Airways flights as it awaits funding

Late on Tuesday evening, Comair made a rather important announcement that really should have been made earlier in the day.

The airline operator has announced that it has voluntarily suspended all Kulula and British Airway flights from Tuesday evening onwards until it is able to successfully secure additional funding.

While the firm’s business rescue practitioners appear to believe that the capital needed to continue operations will be secured, this is of little solace to passengers who arrived at airports only to find their flights are now cancelled.

In fact, Kulula’s official Twitter account only tweeted an announcement about suspended flights from 1st June just after 07:00 on Wednesday morning.

We should also point out that Kulula just recently – as in before midnight on Tuesday – concluded a sale that ended while this voluntary suspension of operations was going into effect.

“You ran a 30% sale yesterday, valid till today to quickly get some cash flow for month end expenses and you KNEW flights would be suspended?! That’s a new kind of low,” wrote one irate customer on the Kulula Facebook page.

This is just one of many comments which mirror this sentiment. People are understandably irate.

Comair chief executive officer, Glenn Orsmond said the firm deeply regrets “the inconvenience this suspension will cause our customers”.

“We did everything we could to avoid it. Comair, the BRPs and the lenders are working all out to get the funding in place so that we can resume our normal flight schedule as soon as possible,” Orsmond said in a statement.

The airline operator notes that customers have the option of receiving a Travel Bank Credit or they can request a full refund. Customers wishing to take advantage of either option should email MNContactCentre[at]comair[dot]co[dot]za.

“Comair is inherently a viable business. We have the two of the best airline brands in the country. We are on track to carry over 4 million passengers this year and generate R5.3 billion in revenue. We have excellent staff, a modern fleet, good sales and distribution channels and low operating costs, which is why we believe the funding will be secured,” Orsmond added.

We hope for the sake of the passengers that Comair is able to secure this funding sooner rather than later.

[Image – CC BY SA Alan Wilson]

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