South African private-sector airline group Comair, which is currently under business rescue, and its business rescue practitioners (BRPs), announced on May 22 the options open to those holding tickets for flights with the group. Comair operates the British Airways in South Africa and Kulula low cost carrier brands.
The announcement covers tickets for both brands, whether issued to individuals, groups, companies or travel agents. The options apply to tickets for flights from between March 14 and October 31 this year.
People who did not buy their tickets directly from Comair, but purchased them through a third party (such as a travel agent, UK airline British Airways, or another airline partner of Comair), should direct their ticket enquiries to these third parties. (Comair provides a list of its airline partners on its website, at www.comair.co.za/business-rescue/airline-partner-contacts.)
Those who bought their tickets directly through Comair – these tickets have numbers starting with the digits 161 – have four options. To exercise three of these options, they must fill in and submit a ‘Customer Election Form’ by June 17 this year.
The election form can be found at https://api.comair.co.za/businessrescue. The three options it provides for are – retain the value of the unused ticket, the value of which will remain valid until October 31 next year, and which can be used to make a future booking (subject to availability and any changes in rates/fares/taxes); give up the value of the ticket and abandon any claim for the unused flight; or, become a creditor of the airline, and the claim for the value of the ticket will be handled under the business rescue plan (assuming it is approved) – those taking this option will have the same rights as other creditors, as set out in Section D of the BRPs Notice to Affected Parties (see www.comair.co.za/Media/Comair/page/business-rescue/section-129-notice-and-explanation-of-rights.pdf).
The fourth option is not to fill out and submit the election form. “Where no election is received by the 17th of June, the value of the booking will remain valid until 31 October 2021 and can be used to make a future flight booking with Comair, subject to availability and difference in rates, fares and/or taxes,” stated the company in its press release.