Attempts will be made over the next 48 hours to rescue the collapsed transatlantic budget carrier Zoom.
All flights by the carrier have now ceased following the impounding of an aircraft in Canada for non-payment of bills on Thursday. Zoom has been placed in administration, but attempts are being made to rescue it.
Zoom was founded in Canada by its Scottish owners Hugh and John Boyle.
Hugh Boyle told the BBC early on Friday that the collapse came after a ”domino effect” following the initial impounding of an aircraft. He said talks were in progress with potential investors.
”We were in the process of doing a refinancing package, but regrettably, it fell apart when a lessor became aggressive and seized one of the planes,” he said.
”Over the next 48 hours we will be talking to many people to see if we can get services going rather than just completely throwing in the towel.”
The Boyle brothers used their ”80 million fortune from the sale of their previous venture, Direct Holidays, to set up the airline. Two years ago, a separate UK sister company, Zoom Airlines Ltd, was set up in order to gain a UK operating certificate, meaning Zoom could operate from the UK to the US. The airline began a Gatwick-New York flight in 2007, aiming to offer knockdown fares even in high season and also challenged British Airways on its Gatwick-Bermuda monopoly.
This summer, it ran services from Gatwick to San Diego, an ex-BA route, and to Fort Lauderdale, the destination which marked the final attempt by Sir Freddie Laker to operate a budget transatlantic service.
However, earlier this year, Zoom admitted that its attempt to offer bargain fares on the New York service was being defeated by the soaring price of oil and indicated that this summer would be the last it ran the route.
Those with forward bookings on Zoom now face the challenge of securing refunds. Anyone booking a package with a hotel should be covered under the Atol system, while those purchasing tickets with credit cards should also be covered.
However, the collapse highlights once again the anomaly whereby scheduled air ticket purchases made with cash or debit cards are not automatically insured against the failure of a carrier.
Zoom's founders Hugh and John Boyle (l-r)
For more information and Zoom's customer announcement, visit www.flyzoom.com.
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