Posit: People think an airline might be financially shaky.
Consequence: People stop buying flights on said airline.
Result: Pretty soon it is financially shaky.
Conclusion: You can make airlines fail.
Please forgive the paraphrasing of one of my favorite movies, but I thought it was a great view into how things can go awry with an airline. And, in my case, it is nearly exactly what happened.
For our trip to India and Sri Lanka over New Years we needed some local flights. Last time we were in India we flew on Kingfisher and SpiceJet and enjoyed them both and I was quite willing to consider them again for this trip. Kingfisher had flights on the days and times we needed them and they were actually $10-20 less per person than the other cheapest fares available. Yet I still didn’t book those flights. Because Kingfisher has been appearing financially shaky lately.
The company has missed payments on fuel bills and otherwise decided to cut costs, leading to ad hoc flight cancelations randomly. That’s normally enough to cause me to shy away, especially on a trip where our time is limited and there will be some non-refundable expenses outside the airfare. So I booked elsewhere.
A couple of days later I see the news that I probably made the correct choice: one of the routes I was considering booking with Kingfisher is no longer being operated. Whoopsie. Sure, it meant rearranging our schedule a bit in India to skip the COK-CMB route but I did it without hesitation once I saw the potential issues with the Kingfisher flights. And I have no regrets at all.
I’m also not going to pretend that the $150 in lost revenue from me is what caused the flight to be pulled from the schedule, but the coincidence of the timing was awfully convenient.
ps- Bonus points (and maybe a drink chit or two) if you can name the movie.
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