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[Guyana] TravelSpan back in operations

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[Guyana] TravelSpan back in operations

Unread post by bimjim » Tue Aug 12, 2014

http://www.guyanatimesgy.com/2014/08/11 ... perations/

[Guyana] TravelSpan back in operations
... after grounding hundreds in NY, GT
August 11, 2014

Travel Span resumed operations on Monday after being grounded for several days, resulting in hundreds of passengers being stranded both in Guyana and New York.

In a statement issued on Monday evening, Vision Airline and TravelSpan extended “sincerest and heartfelt apology and regrets the extensive delays have caused our travelling public.” The airline said “This extensive and unforeseen debilitating delay was due to both its dedicated and back-up aircraft encountering mechanical related issues over the weekend. The 767/300 is back in the air and has resumed flying while the maintenance team continues to work around the clock on getting the second aircraft back in the air.”

According to the airline, while this is taking place “we are making major effort to look for an alternative carrier to use as subservice, in order to airlift all passengers to their destinations, our number one priority is passenger safety and we will never compromise on equipment. We are pleased to announce that passengers were flown out for Guyana at 16:00h on Monday and additional flights are scheduled for today and Wednesday.”

The airline said it will continue its efforts and commitment to rectifying the situation with urgency. “We have been working with all affected passengers since the first delay, we have given out meal vouchers at the airports where passengers were already checked in, we have placed out of town passenger into hotels, we are additionally extending stays on trips for those that can, at no cost to passengers, based on space availability and in more severe cases, we have been processing refunds for passengers that can no longer travel or choose not to travel. Vision has assured that they are working diligently to get back on schedule.”

Meanwhile, more than 400 passengers who booked with TravelSpan Airways were forced to make alternative travelling arrangements following several flight cancellations over the past two weeks. Guyana Times was told that passengers were left stranded in the US as well as in Guyana. A source had told this publication that the two aircraft leased from Vision Air are experiencing major mechanical problems and the TravelSpan team is making every possible attempt to transport its stranded passengers to their destination.

The delays, according to reports, have resulted in persons losing their jobs in the US since they could not have gotten back on time. A CJIA official confirmed that there was another cancellation on Sunday evening which left passengers furious.

The official said that it will take some time to get back into real scheduling due to the number of passengers to transport. As a result of the disruptions, the official noted that Caribbean Airlines has been taking up the slack.
Guyana Times was told that a return ticket to the US is now climbing to US$1000, and is expected to increase further if the situation is not corrected. In addition, there have been reports that passengers to other connecting flights are also affected.

Ever since it re-entry into the Guyanese market in December last, there has been smooth flow but of recent, the airline has been facing major challenges with respect to the aircraft used. There have been speculations that the aircraft are too old to serve the US-Georgetown route. Apart from the delays, the airline has been hit with high fuel prices that have forced it to charge for in flight services at a minimum cost. Nevertheless, the airline remains committed to serving the travelling public.

Only recently TravelSpan applied to the Guyana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) for permission to operate a scheduled service, moving away from the charter service it is licensed to provide. Officials at the airline had told Guyana Times that the move to acquire such a licence basically indicates that TravelSpan is here for the long haul. “A charter service is basically to operate seasonal, but with this Scheduled Licence we have applied for is indicating that we are here for the long haul,” the airline official said.

Most international airports serve as hubs, or places where non-direct flights may land and passengers switch planes. International airports often have many airlines represented, and many of these are foreign. Passengers connecting to domestic flights from an international flight generally must take their checked luggage through Customs and re-check their luggage at the domestic airline counter, requiring extra-time in the process. In some cases in Europe, luggage can be transferred to the final destination even if it is a domestic connection.

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