Kingfisher to Join oneworldBack to Forum
WHilst not central to the topic, I think there is a need to look at the IATA strcutures which were developed in a time of National FLag Carriers subsidized by Governments (and as we all know that does not happen any more….). Many airlines have very different financials models to the original flag carrriers with mostly leased assets and limited access to addtional capital, focussing their attention on revenue.7 Feb 2012
LuganoPirate, thank you for the explanation (although I already understood how clearing houses work), but (with respect) the key issue for such arrangements from an operational perspective is solvency (ability to pay debts as and when they fall due, which is a cashflow issue) rather than capital – although, of course, there can be a knock-on effect since lenders may not be willing to provide funds to keep a company solvent unless it has enough capital (as we have all seen in recent years). This issue of solvency is distinct from bankruptcy (owing more than you own) and for companies, the issue under so-called bankruptcy laws is in fact commonly one of solvency rather than bankruptcy (you can be insolvent without being bankrupt, just as you can be bankrupt but solvent). Having said that, I don’t know whether IATA specifically require members to pass a net-worth test (where capital would be relevant). They may even require posting of collateral/margin, for all I know. In any event, though, Kingfisher have said they have paid all their dues to IATA and that the non-payment was only a technical glitch (http://articles.economictimes.indiatimes.com/2012-02-03/news/31021228_1_kingfisher-airlines-kingfisher-flight-kingfisher-spokesperson), so one wonders if that is really the reason for the oneworld suspension
Saffjoyfox – I hope you are wrong about Kingfisher’s survival prospects. I like their service, and was looking forward to my future Indian trips being on them while still being able to clock up oneworld miles and status. Fingers crossed they sort it all out soon (although at the moment I am not scheduled to go back to India until Q3)7 Feb 2012
Ian, I also hope that Kingfisher survives as I always enjoyed my flights within India on them. Their service was always excellent – and it was always amusing when the cabin crew offered to clean the passengers’ spectacles. Since their woes, I have moved to Jet for my internal flights while in India as the Kingfisher flight schedules were not reliable. I have not flown with them on their India-LHR routes, but know people who have and who thoroughly enjoyed the experience.7 Feb 2012
I have had a few domestic trips on Kingfisher, which were fine but nothing special.
I have also only done one international trip, but that was quite something. I forewent my endless search for oneworld miles (to maintain my status) and opted for the Kingfisher flight from Mumbai to HK instead of CX. I haven’t enjoyed a flight so much for years. Apart from the fact that despite my best efforts I wasn’t able to get just one of the massage zones on the seat working (I could only get all five at once), which was the only problem during the entire flight, it was a delight.
Instead of the usual dynamic where all the business class passengers don’t want to talk to each other, or even acknowledge each other’s existence (I normally fall squarely into this camp, I must admit), as soon as the seatbelt sign went off everyone bundled into the bar and started chatting. Although it was an overnight flight, I spent the entire journey in the bar chatting to various passengers including a delightful Dutch family who were based in India, as well as to the ever-helpful barman. The only disruption was due to occasional turbulence, when I left my barstool and took up residence on one of the sofas (because they had seatbelts). The only time I spent in my own seat (apart from take-off and landing) was for the meal, which I think would be the only drawback if you didn’t like Indian food.
Fortunately I love spicy food so thought it was wonderful. I was very much looking forward to reliving that experience, but will have to wait for oneworld membership to get back on track!8 Feb 2012
According to The Economic Times dated February 14, Kingfisher has not paid its staff since last December. Surely this must be affecting staff moral which in turn will impact on service standards ?
The article also notes than Jet Airways staff haven’t been paid for January although payment may come through today.15 Feb 2012