MorePassengers stranded by Cobalt Air collapse told to buy new flights

Passengers have been left stranded after Cypriot airline Cobalt Air cancelled all its flights just before midnight last night.

A statement on the carrier’s website warned passengers with tickets not to travel to airports today.

The airline had run 20 flights a week out of the UK.

It urged those looking for a refund to contact their travel agent or credit card provider.

The statement said last night: “Cobalt regrets to announce that it will be cancelling all flights as of 23:50pm on October 17, 2018 due to indefinite suspension of Cobalt’s operations. As a result, future flights or services provided by Cobalt will be cancelled and will no longer operate.

“Passengers who have un-flown tickets are instructed to not go to Larnaca airport or any departure airport tomorrow, October 18 2018 as no Cobalt flights will operate and no Cobalt staff will be present.

“We sincerely apologise once again and would like to thank our very loyal customers for their support over the last two years of Cobalt operations.”

Local media reported that Cobalt Air had failed to reach a deal with a potential new investor.

The Cyprus Mail said the airline’s main backer was China’s Avic Joy Air.

Cypriot transport minister Vassiliki Anastassiadou said alternative arrangements would be made for passengers booked with the airline.

The transport ministry in Cyprus said that passengers expecting to fly with Cobalt Air today should secure one-way tickets in economy class from another airline, and keep their receipt for their reimbursement.

Passengers expecting to travel with the airline for the next seven days will be informed promptly about travel procedures, the ministry said.

It was not immediately clear how many passengers would be affected, but nine flights had been scheduled to arrive and further nine to depart at Larnaca airport today.

Cobalt Air was founded in 2015 after Cyprus Airways went into liquidation. The airline operated its first service in July 2016 from Larnaca to Athens.

It flew to 12 countries on 21 routes from its home base in Cyprus and employed 200 staff.

Based at Larnaca international airport, Cobalt Air operated a fleet of leased Airbus A319s and A320s across a network covering the UK, Ireland, Belgium, France, Switzerland, Spain, Israel, Greece and Russia.

UK airports served included Birmingham, Heathrow, Gatwick, Manchester and Stansted.

Daily Heathrow flights started in March with fares leading in at €55 one-way

Cobalt Air’s CEO was Andrew Madar and the chief commercial officer was Paul Simmons, previously with easyJet and Malaysia Airlines.

Danish budget carrier Primera Air ceased trading earlier this month after 14 years of operation.

MorePassengers stranded by Cobalt Air collapse told to buy new flights