A British Airways franchise in South Africa, Comair, which operates flights under two brands, has been forced to ground all flights due to a lack of funds.
Comair is in business rescue, a form of bankruptcy protection/reorganization, and practitioners overseeing the process are hopeful that fresh cash could be raised.
You can access Comair here.
Comair-operated British Airways and Kulula flights were grounded for five days in March when South Africa’s civil aviation regulator had issues with the airline’s safety practices.
Statement from Comair:
[Johannesburg, 31 May, 20h00] Comair has announced that regrettably it is obliged to suspend all British Airways (operated by Comair) and kulula.com flights from Tuesday evening 31 May 2022 pending successfully securing additional funding. The company’s business rescue practitioners (BRPs) have advised that the process to raise the necessary capital is in progress and that there is reason to believe such funding may be secured. Once received, the airline will be able to recommence operations, but regrettably under these circumstances, the practitioners have no choice but to voluntarily suspend all scheduled flights until the funding is confirmed.
British Airways (operated by Comair) and kulula.com ticket sales have also been suspended with immediate effect. “We deeply regret 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,” says Comair CEO, Glenn Orsmond.
“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.” For customers on British Airways (operated by Comair) flights, British Airways’ booking with confidence policy will apply. Details can be found here. Customers may also contact the Contact Centre on BAContactCentre@comair.co.za.
kulula.com customers on suspended flights have the option of a Travel Bank credit or can request a full refund of their ticket value. The Travel Bank credit can be used by the passenger or someone else. Customers wanting the credit can e-mail MNContactCentre@comair.co.za and those wishing to apply for a refund can e-mail .
This is the second grounding of Comair’s flights in 2022, which certainly doesn’t look good.
How much trust can passengers have for an airline that must temporarily halt its flights while it searches for fresh cash?
It would be unfortunate to see Comair disappear, however. I have enjoyed flying on these British Airways branded domestic flights within South Africa.