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Wow Air goes bust, thousands of customers stranded

Patrick Christys
Mar 28, 2019

Wow Air has cancelled all flights, leaving thousands of passengers stranded.

The real shocker is that Wow Air were allowing customers to pay for flights right up until 7am on the day they closed down.

Passengers woke up to the news that the company had ceased operations and that they should simply book with another airline.

As if booking with an airline that makes Ryanair look reliable wasn't bad enough, less than half of travellers' insurance policies cover them if the airline folds.

This is why it's so important to check the small print on your travel insurance policy - go to A Spokesman Said and find the best deal on the market for you.

Absolutely devastated with the news of @wow_air ceasing operations this morning 💔 Our dream honeymoon trip to Iceland gets postponed again 😔

Alexandra Spence, a research analyst from Toronto, Canada, was due to fly home from Berlin on Saturday.

She said: "I have yet to receive any formal indication from Wow, and only a few days ago they emailed me to see if I wanted to upgrade my flight. So now I have paid for a return flight home that no longer exists. I still can't believe it.

"I'm now scrambling to find a flight that same day. It's last minute so the prices have skyrocketed and I don't imagine I'll be getting a refund from Wow."

Wow's website suggests a range of ways that customers may be able to recoup some of their money.

Passengers covered by various protected booking methods, including booking by credit card or through a European travel agent, should try to get their money back from them.

Some compensation may be recouped from Wow directly "including in accordance with European regulation on Air Passenger Rights", or, in case of a bankruptcy, claims should be filed to the administrator or liquidator.

The airline was founded in 2011 by Skuli Mogensen. It employed 1,000 people, who are now presumably coming to terms with the fact they've just been made unemployed.

It carried 3.5 million passengers last year in its 11 aircraft, which did a mixture of long and short haul flights across Europe and America.

Rory Boland, the travel editor of Which?, said Wow had been selling flights right up until 07:00 on Thursday morning. "Passengers will quite rightly be appalled that Wow Air was still selling tickets right up to the moment it collapsed.

"You will need to check if you booked your flights as part of a package as this will mean you are ATOL protected and will be entitled to your money back.

"If not, you may still be able to claim through your travel insurance or card issuer but it will depend on your circumstances."

Wow Air is far from the first small airline to go bust recently.

Earlier this year, Germany's Germania filed for bankruptcy, and UK regional airline Flybmi also ceased flying in February.

And Flybe was taken over earlier this month, with shares costing a single penny.

Ryanair also published its first quarterly loss since March 2014.


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