Tour operators undaunted by Comair/Kulula crises

Tour operators undaunted by Comair/Kulula crises
First Comair Boeing 737-800 flight to Saint Helena Airport

Most operators are waiting until schedules are confirmed before they rebook, and everyone is holding thumbs and hoping that the flights will be able to resume in time for the June and July Mauritius holiday season.

On Tuesday night (May 31), Comair suddenly announced the suspension of all BA Comair and kulula flights. The company said it needed emergency funding to continue operating (see Travel News’ report here).

Beachcomber Tours said on Thursday (June 2), that BA Comair’s flights to Mauritius had been cancelled until June 7. The tour operator had 18 affected pax in Mauritius at the time the flights were suspended, and they had needed to be re-accommodated.

Beachcomber Tours MD, Terry Munro, explained: “We will not change flights taking place after 7 June. It can be costly with amendment fees, etc. This means that we are working on changes up to and including June 7, with the hope that Comair sorts out its finances soon.”

Recently Kulula announced charter flights to Zanzibar in conjunction with AfricaStay. The company had used a kulula aircraft to operate four charter flights shortly before the suspension. AfricaStay has reassured its trade partners that the charter service to Zanzibar is secure. CEO, Marian Sandu, said AfricaStay had not been significantly impacted by the situation and confirmed that it had a charter contract in place with Global Aviation for the rest of the year.

Sandu said AfricaStay would be in touch with customers booked to travel to Mauritius and Zanzibar about any changes. To date, he said AfricaStay had carried over 10 000 passengers to Zanzibar on more than 60 charter flights. Sandu said the plan was to operate three flights a week between SA and Zanzibar in December. With Mango Airlines still grounded, AfricaStay’s charters remain the only direct airline route to the island.

Picture credit: By Paul Tyson – <a rel=”nofollow” class=”external free” href=”″></a>, CC BY 3.0, Link