Skywise grounded until further notice

By Staff Writer
According to an announcement on Tuesday, new kid on the block, Skywise airline, was to be shutdown, effective immediately. This follows a denied request to receive an extension on their third instalment, in settling their debt in unpaid airport service fees.

The nine-month-old airline was reportedly in the process of making its third payment, after an initial grounding in October due to outstanding fees owed to Air Traffic and Navigation Services (ATNS) and Airports Company South Africa (ACSA). 
"Two instalments were duly paid. The third instalment was due to be paid on 1 December for which an extension of 48 hours was requested and rejected,” Skywise told Traveller24.

In addition the airline expressed concern over their 200 plus employees and said that they’d been running on personal funding, without any governmental or institutional support. “Any business takes six to eight months to break even and we were close to that." 

In desperation, yesterday saw the plagued airline company write an open letter to President Jacob Zuma and deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa asking them to intervene in the matter instantly.

Skywise has apologised to all customers affected and have diverted them to their insurance company to begin the refund process.

“All passengers that are booked to travel between 3 and 10 December are being addressed through the call centre. The contact details to use are refunds@skywise.co.za and 0861 911 435. For those traveling after 10 [December], we kindly request for their patience as we work hard with the responsible authorities to bring our aircrafts back in the skies,” said Skywise.
 
The company went further in stating that an announcement would be made shortly updating the public on the outcome of ‘process that is currently in progress.’
 
“For about eight months we had made losses and we were now getting to a point where we can break even. With peak season ahead and more than 8 000 passengers having booked to fly with Skywise airline, they must be looking forward to having their holidays. Most of them have never flown before and now have a chance to fly on affordable rates because of Skywise airline,” the private airline explained. 

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