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2 minute read
3 Dec 2015
12:53 pm

Skywise: little sympathy from industry

Moneyweb

Airlines know the rules, agree to comply – Barsa.

Grounded low-cost airline Skywise got little sympathy from its industry peers after the Airports Company of South Africa (Acsa) suspended Skywise’s operations in all of its airports on Tuesday night, due to non-payment.

Board of Airline Representatvies of South Africa (Barsa) CEO June Crawford said: “All airlines before starting new operations are aware of the terms and conditions of payment for services provided by Acsa and ATNS (Air Traffic Navigation Services).  In fact all airlines agree to these conditions.

“I do not believe exceptions can be made,” she said.

This follows a passionate plea by Skywise in an open letter to President Jacob Zuma, asking him to intervene to enable Skywise to fly, or accommodate its passengers on national carrier SAA.

In the meantime ATNS spokesperson Percy Morokane denied statements that the organisation has also grounded Skywise. “Our business relations with Skywise are sound and to this end – they remain our valued clients,” Morokane said.

Qadir said on 702 that she will knock on every door to prevent the airline from going under.

Passengers

Skywise co-chair Tabassum Qadir said in an interview on Talk Radio 702 on Wednesday that all she asks from Zuma is that Skywise’s passengers be accommodated. She said they would otherwise be stranded over the festive season, since other airlines are booked to capacity.

At least one other domestic airline Moneyweb spoke to, did not agree, saying there is in fact too much capacity in the market.

Passenger Laura Tlale said on Facebook on Wednesday morning that her Skywise flight from Cape Town to Johannesburg was cancelled and indicated that passengers were told Skywise would not fly for the rest of the week.

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Skywise has stopped taking bookings and flights on its website show the message ‘Sold out’.

Moneyweb has repeatedly reported on Skywise flights being delayed and cancelled and the Air Services Licensing Council has subpoenaed Skywise to appear before it on December 9 to account for these occurrences.

Passengers who have been subjected to such cancellations have been complaining that they are not getting their refunds within 21 days, as promised by the airline.

Online travel agent Travelstart has said passengers who made bookings using their credit cards can reverse the payments and those using its platform for bookings, with inclusion of the optional Airline Liquidation Policy can contact Travelstart to submit claims for cancelled flights.

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