Thai Airways says it cannot honour ticket refunds for now, possibly forever

Citing asset protection, Thai Airways International (THAI) said on Thursday that the airline will temporary be unable to provide refunds for tickets. Thai Airways sources on Friday told Thai Enquirer that some of the ticket refunds will unlikely ever get compensated.

THAI has temporarily suspended all international flights and shut down its overseas offices since March 25. The shutdown has been extended until the end of June.

The airline said in a statement on Thursday that the airline has been providing passengers with options to either turn their ticket into a travel voucher with the same value as the ticket, or get a refund within 180 days without any fee. 

“However, the company has already entered a rehabilitation process under the consideration of the Central Bankruptcy Court. This means that the company is legally forced to stop providing refund on tickets at the moment,” the statement read. 

Company sources told Thai Enquirer on Friday that depending on how the new management carries out the restructure, chances are ticket refunds may never be honoured.

“The company right now has been instructed to keep as many assets as possible and avoid a mass sell off of technical and physical assets,” said a former director at THAI. “Also the company is broke. So without the selling of assets, there is no chance of a refund.

“These small considerations like ticket refunds are low on the priority despite the bad press, they might try to give them ticket credit exchange in the future because a full refund might never happen.”

Thailand’s Central Bankruptcy Court on Wednesday accepted THAI restructuring filing which means that creditors will now be unable to collect debts from THAI while the case is still open.

The first hearing is expected to start on August 17 and creditors will have a period of 3 days after that to appeal. 

Many passengers have been complaining online about the airline dodging questions about their refund policy for the past months. With the situation cleared up, it is unlikely to ameliorate the situation.

The company is protected by law from creditors and customers until the restructure is over.

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