Online travel agency Fly365 entered voluntary administration last Friday, after 4 years in business.
Many hundreds of Fly365.com customers that booked tickets during recent weeks have now had their tickets cancelled. Others are without recourse after airlines cancelled flights which were originally booked through Fly365 due to the coronavirus outbreak. These customers have been left in limbo by the online travel agency, which has taken down its website and social media accounts.
AFF members are among those affected, with one posting:
Just checked with son and DIL who are flying to UK in September. These bastards took their cash and never ticketed the trip on Emirates. They are a young couple with a baby. Son and DIL were blissfully unaware so at least its given them time to do a chargeback and rebook.
The liquidation of Fly365 bears similarities to last year’s collapse of online travel agent Bestjet, which left thousands of travellers with cancelled flight bookings. According to The Guardian, Bestjet’s former general manager was also a director of Fly365.
If you have a booking with Fly365 that has been cancelled, you may be able to claim a credit card chargeback if you paid with a credit card.
Fly365, which often appeared in the results of Skyscanner flight searches, was accredited by the Australian Federation of Travel Agents (AFTA). AFTA’s chief executive, Jayson Westbury, said the orgnaisation would review its accreditation scheme and how it applies to online travel agents.
This unfortunate case is another reminder of some of the risks of booking travel through online travel agencies. They can be a few dollars cheaper than booking directly with the airline or an established travel agent, but there are risks involved. Aside from the risk of bookings not being honoured if the agency collapses, there are many reports of problems with some online travel agencies. Common complaints include poor service and difficulties making changes to bookings – including in cases where the airline itself has changed or cancelled a flight.
If you recently made a booking through Fly365.com, you should check the status of your ticket. It may have been cancelled, even if you weren’t notified of this.
Join the discussion on the Australian Frequent Flyer forum: Fly365 – Gone!