Fly365, an Aussie online flight booking company, with links to collapsed budget airfare company Bestjet, has left travellers out of pocket after it entered voluntary administration on Friday.
Sydney-based Fly365 deactivated both its website and Facebook page last week, leaving customers who believed they had secured flight bookings with little information about how to recover their money.
Unfortunately, this occurrence is just one of a number of agencies to collapse in recent months, which raises questions about the adequacy of self-regulation in the industry.
Fly365 was put into voluntary administrator, causing mass confusion among travellers who had booked with the company and paid in full just days prior.
Customers who have tried to contact the hotline, they are met with a frustrating automated voice message advising callers that the “Australian contact centre is currently closed.”
Upset customers have lost thousands of dollars and have turned to a Facebook support group to discuss the sudden collapse with other people affected. Since being created, the group has more than 650 members.
According to a statement, “AFTA was not given any advance warning, or prior advice, that Fly365 were entering voluntary liquidation and as such AFTA is currently investigating the circumstances leading to the liquidation.”
“This is a very regrettable situation and AFTA strongly believes that contributing circumstances beyond the control of AFTA and the ATAS scheme have resulted in this outcome.”
Jayson Westbury, AFTA Chief Executive
“While the liquidation process will need to run its course, a much deeper review of the situation is being undertaken by AFTA and a further review of the ATAS scheme will be given serious consideration as it applies to Online Travel Agents in Australia,” Westbury added.
“AFTA will be providing support to customers and impacted travel suppliers as the situation unfolds and will provide further updates as the information becomes available.”
What can you do if you’ve booked with Fly365?
Customers who have booked travel arrangements through Fly365 should contact the airline directly to confirm whether or not their flights have been confirmed. Most recent bookings made through Fly365 may not have been ticketed.
If they paid by credit card, make contact with the credit card provider and seek a chargeback. Customers can also review travel insurance policies to see if they can claim.
Customers are advised to contact the liquidator, Roger and Carson Pty Ltd, directly. The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission will intervene should issues with the liquidator arise.
Click here for more information.
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