Jetstar apologises to stranded passengers in Bali

A Jetstar aircraft from Adelaide lands at Kingsford Smith Airport on November 18, 2020 in Sydney, Australia. Extra health screenings have been introduced for travellers into Sydney from South Australia following a COVID-19 cluster outbreak in Adelaide.

Jetstar has apologised to roughly 4,000 passengers who were stranded in Bali over the past week because of flight cancellations.

The budget airline said it had cancelled eight return flights to Sydney and Melbourne from Denpasar since 1 September.

Angry travellers have complained on social media of scrambling for last-minute arrangements.

Jetstar said 180 passengers are still stranded in Bali.

The carrier, which is run by Australia’s flagship airline Qantas, said that most of the impacted passengers were given accommodation.

“Unfortunately, our Boeing 787 fleet has been impacted by a number of issues, including a lightning strike, a bird strike, damage from an item on the runway and delays sourcing a specific spare part for one of our aircraft due to global supply chain challenges. The part has to be road freighted across the US,” Jetstar Chief Pilot Jeremy Schmidt said in a statement.

The airline said two special flights will operate on Tuesday to fly customers from Denpasar to Melbourne, carrying more than 300 customers. This will be in addition to three other scheduled flights from Denpasar to Melbourne and Sydney.

Qantas has been struggling with flight cancellations and lost luggage since Australia reopened its borders in February. Qantas said that its underlying loss before tax had widened to A$1.86bn ($1.3bn; £1.1bn) in the year to the end of June, from the previous year.

    Its chief executive Alan Joyce said “the speed and scale of that recovery has been exceptional”.

    “Our teams have done an amazing job through the restart and our customers have been extremely patient as the whole industry has dealt with sick leave and labour shortages in the past few months,” Mr Joyce added.

    Last month, the air carrier asked senior executives to work as baggage handlers for three months to tackle an acute staffing crunch.


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