|Dalmatian ends ticket sales and announces closure|
It is over before it ever really began. Croatian low cost airline, Dalmatian, has announced it is halting operations after one of its investors left the company. “This departure has affected our ability to provide you, the customer, the proper support and services to launch Dalmatian, and unfortunately, we do not expect this issue to be rectified in the short term. We have therefore made this decision now to safeguard our customer’s interests”, the airline says. It adds that those who purchased tickets with the airline will be issued a full refund, “As such, we have notified our bank (PBZ) to issue full refunds to all passengers who have purchased a flight ticket with Dalmatian, to be effective immediately. Our bank has processed the refunds today and customers can expect their refunds to be deposited on their credit card account with which they made their original purchase”. It ends by saying, “We, at Dalmatian, must sincerely apologise for any inconvenience this has caused you”.
The announcement comes just over ten days after the airline began selling tickets for flights from Zagreb to a total of eleven destinations, mostly unserved from the Croatian capital. According to Zagreb Airport, it was never aware Dalmatian was planning to launch services. On the other hand, airports such as Hamburg and Sofia issued statements welcoming the new low cost carrier. Those that purchased tickets with Dalmatian took to social media yesterday to lash out at the airline after it was unavailable for contact for over 24 hours.
Croatia has been flooded with airlines wishing to set up bases across the country with foreign air operator’s certificates, allowing them to bypass local bureaucracy. On Saturday, Air Croatia will launch flights from Gothenburg to Zagreb, Split and Zadar with a wetleased ČSA Czech Airlines aircraft. It previously sold tickets for flights from Stockholm to Zagreb and Split as well but suspended sales just over a week ago. The Dalmatian “experience” comes as a warning sign to all not to experiment with start-ups in the region and give them time before they are properly established.