Friday 30 December 2016

KENYA: Jambojet Dissapoints Passengers, With Delays, Cancellations And Negligence

'They should be sued for the damage they caused to our travel plans' shouted a passenger from Kenya, who had been booked to travel to Lamu on Jambojet but was offloaded at Malindi's Airport and left to fend for himself and his family.

Jambojet, one of Kenya's low cost airlines, had over the past days, according to affected passengers, set new lows for dealing with delayed and canceled flights, in particular vis a vis response times of emails and social media queries, where, if at all, template replies appear to have been copied and pasted by Jambojet staff.

Only days after the full impact of the delays became public did the airline finally admit what aviation pundits had already established, that technical issues with one of the airline's leased Q400's saw the entire schedule literally fall apart, with travelers booked to the Ukunda airfield close to the Diani beaches being dumped at the main airport in Mombasa, having to make their own way to their resorts.

'I booked my flight to Ukunda because I want to avoid the dreadful drive through Mombasa and then the agonizing wait at the ferry. Flying directly saves many hours each way and Jambojet stole those precious vacation hours from us. How can an airline just dump us in Mombasa when our ticket says Ukunda. To make it worse, where was the station manager and duty manager of the airline? This will have consequences, that is all I can tell you right now' ranted another Nairobi based regular reader, fuming with anger.

Meanwhile, Tourists at Diani airstrip Kwale county welcomed by Miss tourism drawn from all 47 counties on Mar 28th 2015, Jumbojet a KQ product made its first stop in Diani Kwale County.

Hoteliers at the Coast have accused low-cost carrier Jambojet of “dumping passengers” midway their journeys and delaying flights. Through their lobby group – the Kenya Coast Tourism Association – the hoteliers said the carrier has been dumping passengers destined for Ukunda and Malindi at the Moi International Airport (Mombasa).

“Passengers heading to Ukunda chose a direct flight to avoid the pain at the ferry, and you go ahead to subject them to the same pain again without any qualms. Why don’t you just sell what you can handle instead of giving a false promise of having the capacity to land in Ukunda or Malindi,” KCTA chairman Mohammed Hersi said. He said the inconveniences are hurting domestic tourism , a blow to hotels. However, Jambojet said it has had “unexpected technical challenges” on its fleet that operates most of its coastal routes.

“Additionally, the delivery of our newly leased aircrafts initially schedules for introduction during the peak season was delayed due to unforeseen circumstances, and will only be delivered in early 2017,” the management said in a statement yesterday.

This, it said, has forced the carrier to reschedule flights and carry passengers on smaller aircrafts, while re-routing others via Mombasa using Kenya Airways flights. “We apologise to all concerned for the unpleasant nature of this entire experience and we will resolve the issue,” the management said.