It’s Official: Airberlin Cancels Flights To The Caribbean

In light of airberlin’s insolvency filing several weeks ago, the airline is slowly starting to cancel their routes. They have a temporary loan from the German government, but will run out of money soon enough, so are now having to cut their routes.

A couple of weeks ago, airberlin stopped selling seats on longhaul flights out of their Berlin hub for travel as of October 1, 2017. Specifically, they “zeroed out” availability on their flights from Berlin to Abu Dhabi, Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, and San Francisco.

Yesterday I wrote about how airberlin began only selling full fare tickets on many flights out of Dusseldorf, leading me to believe that they’d soon be canceling those routes as well.

Much of what we expected has now been confirmed by the airline. Airberlin announced on Facebook today that they’re canceling flights to Curacao, Cancun, Havana, Varadero, Punta Cana, and Puerto Plata as of September 25, 2017.

Those who booked their ticket after August 15 (when airberlin filed for insolvency) will be reimbursed, while those who had tickets purchased before that day won’t be, due to German law. If you booked before, ideally you have a credit card that offers travel protection, but if you don’t, many should be able to dispute the charge with their credit card company otherwise.

Here’s airberlin’s full announcement on Facebook:

SCHEDULE CHANGE
airberlin ends Caribbean flight schedule

airberlin is ending its Caribbean flight schedule from Dusseldorf on 25 September 2017. This brings to an end flights to Curacao (Netherlands Antilles), Cancun (Mexico), Havana and Varadero (Cuba) as well as Punta Cana and Puerto Plata (Dominican Republic) from this date.

airberlin kindly asks passengers who booked their flights as part of a package holiday to contact their tour operator for further information. For any tickets bought after the filing for insolvency proceedings on 15th August 2017, we will reimburse the purchase price without charge. Affected passengers are able to submit any additional costs incurred through the website www.airberlin.com/complaint. Tickets that were issued before the filing for insolvency proceedings will not be reimbursed due to insolvency law regulations.

A few days ago, airberlin announced cancellations of a number of individual long-haul flights. These cancellations will also be brought forward to 25 September 2017. This affects connections between Berlin and Abu Dhabi, Chicago, Los Angeles and San Francisco, as well as Dusseldorf and Boston. airberlin apologises for any inconvenience caused by the cancellations.

Background to today’s decision is a reduction of airberlin’s long haul fleet which became necessary due to the current preliminary insolvency proceedings.

As of now, just about the only routes that haven’t been officially canceled are their routes from Dusseldorf to the US, which isn’t too surprising. I imagine Lufthansa would be quite keen to take over those routes.

Comments

  1. Wow!! So according to german law, those passenger were creditors, thus shall be paid in accordance with insolvency law?

    Aren’t they protected by euro aviation law regarding ‘purchased ticket’?

  2. There is a bidder for the whole of AB who will not be happy about this. In my opinion Ryanair may be right. This has a look like an “agreement” to bring parts of AB to LH and to bring down a competitor. Speculating one might say perhaps this was an unofficial amendment to the codeshare contract between LH and EY (as the new AB CEO coming from LH group)…

  3. How long do you think they will continue flying from the US to Düsseldorf? Do you see an end date for those as well?

  4. All flights from Düsseldorf to Boston are also cancelled from Sep25 on! This is also mentioned on their German announcement on facebook!

  5. In fact also the flights from DUS to JFK and MIA. They are not (yet) cancelled, but only bookable into J and Y buckets, i.e. the highest fare classes. LAX, SFO and RSW still seem bookable into all fare classes.

    It appears to me that they are handing back some of their leased aircraft almost immediately. With the remaining planes, they operate the most lucrative routes.

    @James: Yes, unfortunately this is the reality of German insolvency laws. No protection.

  6. I was supposed to leave Krackow Poland on Sept. 12 to Tegal in Berlin. I was notified that my Flights were cancelled. I am unable to trach AB from Krackow. Nów I am hospitilized in Krackow with my spouse. I would like to get back to the U.S. (I live in the Miami area) will I lose my money thT I paid AB for their cancellation? Help guys. Woody F

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