A new wave of Jetstar cancellations worsens travel problems


A continuing problem with Jetstar’s long-haul fleet has prompted a fresh round of flight cancellations over the past week, disrupting Australian travelers visiting Hawaii and Bali over the school holidays.

The Qantas-owned low-cost airline is operating with three of its 11 Boeing 787 Dreamliners out of service, down from five earlier this month, as a series of technical and operational issues continue to wreak havoc on its network.

“Our Boeing 787 fleet has recently been hit by a number of unexpected issues requiring engineering work, including runway debris damage and multiple lightning strikes and bird strikes, which have had a impact on our international network,” a Jetstar spokesperson told this masthead on Tuesday, pledging to “re-welcome” passengers as soon as possible, including on special services or with other carriers.

Travelers to Bali, Singapore and Hawaii have been disrupted after three members of Jetstar’s long-haul fleet were stranded in the middle of school holidays. Credit:Chris Hopkins

Jetstar has confirmed that two Sydney-Honolulu flights have been canceled since Saturday. A Sydney-Denpasar flight was also canceled and another delayed for 24 hours on September 24. This is the second wave of cancellations on the carrier’s Bali service this month, with more than 4,000 passengers affected by the cut of eight return services to Bali two weeks ago. .

The planes on the ground include a 787 which was hit by a freak lightning strike on a flight from Melbourne to the Gold Coast on May 7 and suffered extensive damage to its fuselage. Jetstar said at the time it expected the plane to be grounded for six to eight weeks, but it remains out of service four months later.

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Another lightning strike grounded a second 787 en route to Cairns this weekend, while a third remains out of service due to an electrical maintenance check.

The spokesperson confirmed that a flight credit or refund will be offered to all eligible passengers who no longer wish to travel and that accommodation, meal and other ‘reasonable’ expenses will continue to be offered. to those stranded abroad on a case-by-case basis. . The carrier estimates that all grounded planes will be back in service by the end of this week.

“Unfortunately, with fewer international airlines operating and school holidays, there are very few seats available to welcome customers back, but our teams across the company are working on all options to get them up and running as quickly as possible. possible,” the spokesperson added. .

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