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Thursday 18 April 2019

Yet another budget airline hits turbulence

Wikipedia was straight onto it, as usual: Jet Airways was an Indian international airline based in Mumbai.

The debt-ridden airline today suspended all services, without admitting it is out of business.

A last-ditch emergency funding package couldn't be agreed with lenders, forcing the shutdown, Travel Mole reported.

Jet Airways only had five planes left due to repossessions following unpaid lessor fees and had been operating with pilots and other workers still owed several months' salary.

The airline's website said in a message from CEO Vinay Dube: "It is with deep sadness and with a heavy heart that we would like to share with you that, effective immediately, Jet Airways will be suspending all its domestic and international operations."

Jet's fleet size numbered more than 120 planes just a few months ago. It serves 57 destinations including 37 domestic and 20 international destinations in 15 countries across Asia, Europe, North America and Middle East.

"Since no emergency funding from the lenders or any other source is forthcoming, we will not be able to pay for fuel or other critical services to keep the operations going," the airline said in a statement.

"Consequently, with immediate effect, we are compelled to cancel all our international and domestic flights temporarily.

"This decision has been taken after a painstaking evaluation of all alternatives that were made available to the airline and after receiving guidance and advice on the same from the board.

"We are actively working to try and ensure that the bid process leads to a viable solution for the company."

With passengers left stranded, it is yet another reminder to be cautious when booking overseas flights, and to be sure to have comprehensive travel insurance.

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