Passengers and travel agencies are in a lurch due to Go First airline’s decision to cancel flights on May 3, 4, and 5 and to not sell tickets until May 15.
In addition to announcing a temporary suspension of flights on May 3, 4, and 5, the budget airline controlled by the Wadia group has applied to the National Company Law Tribunal in Delhi for voluntary insolvency resolution procedures.
The airline said on Wednesday that it will not sell flight tickets until May 15.
The Telegraph’s calls and SMS message to a Go First representative went unanswered. On Tuesday, the airline said that it will issue refunds to customers who had previously purchased tickets for the cancelled flights.
There was a time when Go First had nine departures from Kolkata every day. A representative from the airport stated that there are now just two routes: to Delhi and Port Blair.
According to the airport official, many Go First passengers have called to check the status of flights on days other than the day of departure. A large number of customers were phoning travel agencies to ask if they should cancel their reservations.
The uncertainty of whether the airline would compensate them has apparently made several travel agencies hesitant to cancel and refund the money.
Passengers on Go First and the travel brokers who sold them tickets are understandably concerned that their plans may not go as well as expected, that they may not be able to get their money back, and that they may be forced to switch to a more expensive airline.
Agents in the industry say the cancellations are reminding them of when Jet Airways folded. After that, several salespeople were grumbling that the airline wasn’t paying them back for the tickets they’d cancelled.
A family of six was on a vacation to the Andaman Islands, and businessman Firoz Ahmed of Kolkata had booked them all on a Go First aircraft.
“I have reservations for May 8 departure to Port Blair and May 15 return. Now, Ahmed is hearing that the airline won’t be selling tickets until May 15 and that flights during that time could be cancelled.
He forked over Rs 1.2 lakh for the tickets over a month ago.
“Unless I pay again, the travel agent would not purchase tickets on other flights. He indicated he would return the funds after he received compensation from Go Air in the event of flight cancellation. If the planes are cancelled, I have no clue when I will receive my money back,” Ahmed added.
Since the departure date is only a few days away, changing airlines will cost me a fortune. It would be quite costly to cancel the trip now that we have reserved hotel rooms for the duration.
Kanchan Chowdhury, a resident of Lake Town, has purchased five seats for the June 9 Go First aircraft from Leh to Delhi. He forked out Rs 55,000 for the plane tickets almost two months ago.
“My family and I are on a trip. There will be individuals of various ages present. Chowdhury, a businessman, expressed concern that he and his colleagues would be unable to leave Leh in the event of a flight cancellation.
I’ve requested that my travel agency investigate cancelling the tickets and rebooking us with a different airline. He requested that I hold off until there was “greater clarity.”
On May 24th, businessman Sukhendra Nath Das and his teaching wife Rita will be flying from Leh to Delhi on a Go First trip. The couple lives in Sinthee, on the northern outskirts of the city. The tickets cost them a total of Rs 14,500.
We are extremely concerned. We reached out to our travel agency for guidance. There is some confusion, so he urged us to wait,” Rita explained.
As a result of lower prices, travel agencies have been booking Go First.
Since Go First’s fares were more affordable, we were able to get a lot of group bookings for the summer break. Passengers who don’t want to fly Go First have been flooding our phone lines today looking for alternatives. Raktim Roy, managing director of Dolphin Travels, stated, “We are not clear about the situation because there is no formal communication yet from Go First about the cancellation procedures.”
Director of A and A Travel Zone Amin Asghar claimed to have over Rs 2 lakh in his Go First wallet from previously refunded cancelled flights.
Previously, this airline provided the only service between Kolkata and Phuket in Thailand. A lot of times, we’d buy tickets in quantity. Unfortunately, the flight was frequently delayed, and eventually the airline discontinued it,” Asghar said.
money I used to buy Go First tickets for other sectors will be refunded to me in my wallet. At first, I had more than eight million rupees in my bank account. I still have Rs 2 lakh after purchasing tickets in other industries. However, the airline has not issued a cash refund, he said.
Asghar lamented, “Now I’m facing similar problems in all other sectors.”
We hope the crisis will be over and it won’t be like Jet Airways,” said Manav Soni, chairman of the Travel Agents Association of India’s eastern region. Jet has not yet refunded several of its agents in full.