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Thread: Insel in trouble?

  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaptNick View Post
    One issue with Divi is the luggage limitations. We were able to fit nicely into Insel. But speaking to Divi agent yesterday, not only we have to pay extra extra fees for luggage, they can not guarantee that the luggage will be on the same flight! They will send in subsequent flights when/if there is room. Whaat?? For dive and photo travellers like us, that is a real issue if trying to make a US bound connection in CUR. QUOTE

    Did the agent feel that the luggage issue would be the same on the Twin Otters?

    As far as a practical problem on the Islanders, mostly those transported were locals with very minimal luggage, ie: going to work. On the occasions I've used Divi, we 2 were the only divers and our luggage went with us.

    QUOTE Hope and pray Insel is funded to stay afloat another week.
    My feeling is Curacao has a reliable airline in Divi and should let them do the job. Curacao should stop supporting Insel and the screwups who staff it. The state has a long history of supporting failed air services, ALM, DAE, Insel--each seemingly worse than the last--just say no Curacao! Let the employees find other jobs rather than the state supplying them a new toy airline to play with.

  2. #12
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    kinda screwed that up by typing in the quote...then waited too long to try to correct it--10 min time limit--the time limit and blueberry pancakes did not mesh

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by jimw View Post
    Let the employees find other jobs rather than the state supplying them a new toy airline to play with.
    Ouch!

    I certainly am not in favour of hurting other humans’ livelyhoods or families. No need to take out frustrations on folks who are trying to work and make a decent living.

    I am just hoping to get off the island in a timely manner to catch my connection.

  4. #14
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    Capt Nick,

    Did the Divi Divi Air agent feel that the luggage problem you mentioned be the same when flying the Twin Otters? The airline has always said they could have a problem with getting luggage on the Islander aircraft. When we have flown Divi, we were the only divers--so not a problem. I expect there will be a problem when demand is heavy--Fri/Sat afternoon for example, going to Bonaire from Curacao. And under the current situation with Insel.....

  5. #15
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    never had a problem with luggage with Divi - when you have excess luggage with a connection it is easily solved - just check your luggage in a flight or so before yours. always works for me -

  6. #16
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    According to today's Curacao Chronicle--no planes since Friday serving those stuck on St Martin--the Chronicle was quoting a St Martin newspaper. The Insel station chief on St Martin was quoted as saying that the ABC islands come first and that St Martin would be caught up by Wednesday night.

    What's going on on Bonaire now? Is Insel flying 1 or 2 Fokkers? Any charter airlift?

  7. #17
    smits is offline Bonaire Lover SUPPORTING MEMBER - Bonaire Talker
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    Divi has charters. I chartered them once for a sightseeing trip with my family/

  8. #18
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    Seems they gave up updating the website. However still selling tickets and specials.

    Trying to followup thru airport web panel. That seems to be doing some sort of medival dance. Timelines are jumping all over the place. Too much excitement for a retiree.

    Sadly couple of hours ago almost missed noticing a great turtle in Tolo while considering flyout options. Luckily my dear wife brought me back to moment after a ‘gentle’ knock on the head. Hope the pic comes out nice.

    Ps: thanx to all who suggested options. Much appreciated.

  9. #19
    smits is offline Bonaire Lover SUPPORTING MEMBER - Bonaire Talker
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    Latest news on their website:

    Flights 27th of January 2018 are cancelled !!

    27-01-2018 Dear Passengers,
    The flight schedule of InselAir has experienced serious disruptions.
    All flights of today the 27th of January 2018 are cancelled.
    Passengers will be informed about adapted departure times through phone or email. Passengers who are at the airport will be assisted accordingly.
    Our call center can be contacted in the weekends from 08:00-17:00 (local time) at +5999 737 0444 or +1 855 493 6004
    Our sincere apologies for this inconvenience
    With kind regards,
    InselAir Team

  10. #20
    smits is offline Bonaire Lover SUPPORTING MEMBER - Bonaire Talker
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    From The Daily Herald:

    AIRPORT–Irate Insel Air passengers, some stranded since Friday, with others forced to return to their hotels for a second day running, vented their frustration to ground handling staff on Monday when no aircraft was available again to fly to Curaçao and Bonaire.
    Some passengers even discussed bringing a class action law suit against the beleaguered airline, citing a total absence of communication and interest in the welfare of its passengers. Somewhere between 50 and 100 passengers were reportedly affected on Monday, with frustration at the departure area almost turning physical.

    “Every day passengers are piling up, and today no flight again,” one passenger told The Daily Herald. “Nobody is taking care of anything, and there’s virtually no information as to what is going on. We have been cajoling and threatening them to get some information on when a plane is coming. And they don’t want to charter a plane like they did last week when the other plane broke down.

    “There was an alternative last time to send 30 on a KLM plane, but I hear KLM doesn’t want to do that again because it thinks Insel is on the verge of bankruptcy or is bankrupt.
    “Meanwhile we are in a cycle of coming early to the airport, hanging around from 9:00am to 4:00pm, no one says anything, and then the flight is postponed or cancelled. Back to the hotel and same thing again next day. But enough is enough. This airline is liable.”

    Another passenger said: “These ticketing agent girls don’t have a clue because they are waiting for instructions, probably from Curaçao. There is nobody showing up and saying I’m in charge and I’m going to take care of you. These girls are in tears because they feel helpless and it’s not their fault. This is about negligence and not informing us about what is really going on. That’s the bad thing. And they (management – Ed.) leave those girls to be caught in the crossfire.”

    Passengers said they did receive lunch vouchers and complimentary transport.
    “This is really a disgraceful way to treat tourists who should be taken care of. You can get away with it for one day, but not four days. The station manager was clearly avoiding the situation and never showed up,” the first passenger added.

    Later, Insel Station Manager Pascalle Wong-A-Foe gave assurance that the entire backlog of passengers would be flown out by Wednesday.
    “A part for one of the Fokker aircraft we usually send to St. Maarten was missing. The mechanic from Venezuela did not make it as it closed the border, and that caused the issue for St. Maarten,” she explained. “But that Fokker is fixed now. Then the chartered jet could not make it because of a crew issue, but is now arriving tonight (Monday) and the Fokker is also arriving today (Tuesday).

    “The reason the Fokker did not arrive Monday is because we also serve the ABC islands and to not lose that connectivity we are sending one chartered jet and two Fokker aircraft to clear the backlog out. I understand it is very inconvenient for the passengers who were counting on leaving today.
    “It’s the only way, otherwise we lose the connectivity with the ABC islands. They are also important routes for the company to maintain. It’s difficult to schedule St. Maarten and ABC at the same time.”
    Wong-A-Foe said passengers had been turning up at the airport without being called by the airline to do so.

    “We need to work on our communication to passengers to prevent them making unnecessary trips to the airport. Some of them show up early without waiting for us to call them. But we are making lists, checking to see who we can send out on other airlines. We are doing our best to contact passengers, so they don’t have to sit and wait.”

    She indicated with just one flight a day, Insel Air staff only work certain hours and handle other airlines.

    “If a passenger shows up at 7:00am at the airport, they are not going to find anyone from Insel because it is not the regular schedule. Of course, it is something we want to change. But when it happens it means Insel staff are not yet available for the flight because the same staff are dealing with other flights.”
    The chartered jet was due to arrive in St. Maarten at 11:00pm Monday night. The Fokker will also depart for Curaçao today with scheduled passengers, and another Fokker will be available if there are remaining passengers, Wong-A- Foe assured.

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