THE ASSOCIATION of the Indonesian Tours and Travel Agencies (ASITA) Jakarta Chapter has offered to assist suspended Mandala Airlines by giving testimony and recommendations to potential investors.
“Airline traffic continues to grow, especially domestically, and Mandala is an old player with many years of experience,” said ASITA board member Asrul Aziz Taba. “It is in our best interest that they are back in the air so we can do business again.”
In return, ASITA has requested priority for its members to claim deposits and ticket refunds if the carrier, which halted operations on January 13, is eventually declared bankrupt.
Mandala’s fate will be determined on February 18, when the company will find out if the majority of its creditors agree to a proposed restructuring programme, said the carrier’s retail sales manager Made Lesmana. “If so, we will be able to take further steps to resume operations, otherwise the company will be declared bankrupt.”
Swatrav Tours and Travel director Muhammad Arsyad said the fact that Mandala neglected to inform agents it was stopping operations, and still accepted payments on the day it suspended business had damaged its reputation.
“Don’t dream Mandala will regain the confidence of customers without its agents,” he warned.