– GCAA head predicts in light of poor local customer service
HEAD of the Guyana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA), Captain Egbert Field does not fancy Dynamic Airways’ chances of ever making a comeback on the local market.
He gave as his reason for making such a dire prediction the relatively poor service the company provided its local customers, and its not having enough money to reimburse those passengers who would have been affected by its pull out of the country.
Captain Field made the foregoing observation recently, given that mere weeks after exiting its Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection status, the American carrier is already thinking about rebranding and adding to its existing fleet out in the US.
Field told the Guyana Chronicle that since Dynamic stopped operating here, the government has been saddled with picking up the tab of reimbursing those passengers it would have inconvenienced.
But with the $40M bond the company lodged as surety being woefully inadequate to service that debt, the government is now left to source the additional funding needed to pay off those passengers in full.
Dynamic made its final flight out of Guyana last October, and left it to the travel agents to inform those passengers it would have left behind that they needed to officially write the company asking for a refund.
But according to Captain Field, in spite of doing as advised, those passengers are yet to receive a dime, because the government is busy trying to source the additional money needed to avoid having to pay them in parts.
“If we wait on Dynamic, the passengers may never get back their money, or it may take months before that happens,” Field said, adding that the Ministry of Public Infrastructure is currently dealing with the matter.
He said that in addition to having to find the extra money to make the payout, the government is also worried as to how it will reclaim its money from Dynamic after settling its debt.
As to the future of the airline where Guyana is concerned, Field said:
“We definitely will not be entertaining them…unless they come really good.”
He said that after all the issues the country had with Dynamic, he doubts whether any application of theirs will ever be taken seriously.
Dynamic recently announced that as of March 8, it was out of bankruptcy protection, and would be developing its ACMI charter business under its Eastern Air Lines brand. According to CH-Aviation, the Swiss-based civil aviation news site, Dynamic, in its reorganisation plan, said it would continue to provide charter flights to rebuild its finances, since it sees “substantial unmet public/market need for carriers with wide-body convertible aircraft.”
The company has reportedly already begun seeking permission from the American Department of Transportation to increase its fleet beyond the current limit of five “large aircraft” to ten.
Dynamic was also quoted as saying they have the infrastructure and ability to operate 10 aircraft.
Sources say that the Guyanese market remains an extremely lucrative one, and that with an upcoming oil and gas sector and an international airport being constructed to accommodate larger wide-body planes, Guyana’s strategic location between the Caribbean, South, Central and North America, the country may very well remain an ideal operating destination.
Several airlines and charter companies, some out of the US, have been among the numerous operators that have sought to tap into the lucrative Guyanese route.
Charter companies in particular have, however, failed miserably at providing reliable, consistent service to the Guyanese public, particularly on the Georgetown-New York route.
Guyanese have been subjected to bad service, and paying exorbitant prices when air transport is limited.