Tuesday, May 09, 2023

Travel agents may move NCLT against Go First

Travel agents belonging to a leading industry body are contemplating to move NCLT to seek refunds from Go First for cancelled tickets. “Since, we as an association can not move (NCLT), we will provide all assistance to our members, if required,” said Ajay Prakash, president of Travel Agents Federation of India (TAFI) and board member of Federation of Associations in Indian Tourism & Hospitality (FAITH). The development comes on the day when the Directorate General of Civil Aviation(DGCA) directed Go First to stop booking and sale of tickets, directly or indirectly, with immediate effect and until further orders.The airline has extended its flight cancellation period till May 12 and stopped ticket sales till May 15.

Besides, the DGCA has issued a show-cause notice to Go First for its “failure to continue the operation of the service in a safe, efficient and reliable manner”.Prakash said fliers should insist on an actual refund since ‘credit notes’ are worthless. “The government, too, needs to seriously look at a mechanism like an insurance scheme to protect consumers in case of airline failure,” he said, citing the need to have a mechanism via which the payments made by passengers should be returned in case of airline failures. “This is happening too often in India and passengers and travel agents, too, lose a lot of money,” he said.

Last week, in a letter addressed to Go First CEO Kaushik Khona, TAFI said that hundreds of travel agents across the country have placed substantial deposits with the airline in credit shells which were to be used for bookings and currently remain unutilised.The letter stated that passengers whose flights have been cancelled have been calling their agents and are ‘clamouring for refunds’.

09/05/2023 Rohit Vaid/Financial Express

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