Passengers travelling with Flair Airlines were “impacted” on Saturday after 4 of its leased aircraft were seized in Toronto, Edmonton and Waterloo, Ont., in what the corporate described as a “industrial dispute.”
An announcement from the air carrier called the move by “a Recent York-based hedge fund” to take the aircraft “extreme and strange.”
It said Flair would use “additional fleet capability” to reduce the affects on passengers, adding it didn’t foresee any major disruptions to its route map.
Company spokesman Mike Arnot said quite a lot of Flair flights were cancelled Saturday morning, but the corporate had three spare aircraft to backfill those flights.
Arnot says passengers travelling in the following 72 hours will either be accommodated on Flair flights or one other airline at Flair’s expense if a Flair flight isn’t available.
An update from the corporate later Saturday added that customers also can rebook their very own travel and receive a reimbursement inside seven days.
An individual aware of the matter but who was not authorized to talk publicly about it said the payments for the affected planes were only a number of days behind and the quantity owed was small relative to Flair’s overall revenue.
“We’re truly very sorry passengers were impacted today, and are taking steps to get them on their way with minimal disruption. This includes repositioning our spare aircraft to support operations,” the corporate’s statement said.
The leasing company, which Arnot confirmed was Airborne Capital, didn’t immediately reply to an email looking for comment.
Flair’s statement said the airline has been involved in “ongoing communications” with the leasing company and “payment has been initiated.”
“Flair Airlines will proceed to have interaction in a consensual mediation with the lessor to treatment the situation,” the statement said.
The disruption occurred as airports and airlines prepared for a surge in passengers during spring break, which kicks off in Ontario this weekend.
Flair Airlines launched in 2004 as a charter airline and commenced offering usually scheduled service in 2018.
The low-cost, Edmonton-based airline announced in September it planned to change into Canada’s third-largest domestic airline by this summer and expand its fleet to 30 aircraft by the tip of 2023, serving 70 routes.
It has faced obstacles, including a months-long battle last yr over whether its relationship with a Miami-based investor violated rules restricting foreign entities to not more than 49 per cent ownership of a Canadian airline.
The dispute ended when the Canadian Transportation Agency ruled the airline was Canadian and will keep its licence, following Flair’s moves to rejig the composition of its board to make sure no less than half the administrators are Canadian and to finish any unique shareholder rights by the investor.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 11, 2023.
Note to readers: This can be a corrected story. A previous version said Flair Airlines had aircraft seized in Kitchener, Ont. In truth, the seizure occurred in Waterloo, Ont.