In the midst of the uncertainty surrounding its future, Go First, the airline owned by the Wadia Group has now extended the cancellation of all flights until May 12.
The airline, formerly known as GoAir, has filed for voluntary insolvency resolution proceedings with the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) to restructure its debt and liabilities, which have been severely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Cancellation of Flights and Refund Policy
Initially, Go First had suspended its flights for three days starting May 3, but later extended it till May 9 and then May 12. The airline has announced that it will issue a full refund to the original mode of payment for the cancelled flights.
On Thursday, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), the aviation regulator, said that Go First had suspended the sale of tickets till May 15 and asked it to refund tickets for its cancelled flights.
Competition and the Future of the Airline
The insolvency filing by Go First highlights the fierce competition in India’s airline industry, which is dominated by IndiGo, as well as the recent merger of Air India and Vistara under the Tata conglomerate. As a result of a dispute with aircraft lessors, the airline’s future is uncertain.
Some lessors opposed Go Airlines (India) Ltd’s plea at the NCLT’s first hearing on Thursday, citing the airline’s blame this week for the grounding of roughly half of its fleet on “faulty” Pratt & Whitney engines.
The lessors’ concerns
According to the regulator’s website, GY Aviation Lease, SMBC Aviation Capital, Pembroke Aircraft Leasing, and others submitted requests to take back at least 20 planes on Thursday. The cash-strapped airline is attempting to save its assets by requesting an interim moratorium, which the lessors oppose.
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