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No free plane rides

Torika Chandra
Sunday, August 31, 2014

FIJI Airways will not honour airline tickets purchased by 321 people free from their website last Monday, says airline CEO Stefan Pichler.

There was an offer on the airline's website last week for free airfares from Auckland to Nadi. The only cost involved was a $192 surcharge.

However, two days later, Fiji Airways sent an email to all those who had purchased the free tickets, apologising for a computer glitch and cancelling all their tickets.

"Last week special fares were published in error on the Fiji Airways website, causing the sale of 321 $0 fare tickets (AKL-NAN, NAN-AKL). The tax component was still charged," Mr Pichler said.

"Fiji Airways is unable to honour the zero cost tickets as the 321 tickets affected will result in lost revenue and have a significant financial impact on the business.

"We have already contacted all passengers affected to alert them of the glitch, that we will be unable to honour those tickets issued in error, and that the tax portions will be refunded back into their accounts."

According to the NZ Herald, Komal Kumar was one of the 321 who had taken the offer. She, her husband and five other relatives purchased the tickets, excited they would attend a relative's wedding in Fiji next February.

"Because the tickets were so cheap we booked it and took annual leave. Now we can't go, we just wouldn't be able to ... unless we won Lotto or something," Mrs Kumar said.

"In the letter they (Fiji Airways) apologised, but that's not really enough. They have refunded our money, though it's beside the point ... an error should be honoured because the consumers are not at fault."

Mr Pichler while apologising to all passengers affected by the glitch, said they had all been offered a 15 per cent discount towards their next Fiji Airways ticket purchase.

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