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Kingfisher Airlines Suspended from IATA: The Middle of the Beginning of the End

An update on struggling Indian carrier Kingfisher Airlines faced another blow yesterday when IATA suspended it from membership. This means that Kingfisher can no longer use IATA’s payment clearinghouse or payment & settling which, in practical terms, means most travel agents can’t sell tickets and no interlining or codesharing can occur.

Kingfisher hasn’t been paying its employees or partners for months, and the equivalent of the Indian IRS has frozen the airline’s accounts after it stopped paying taxes.

Kingfisher began to go bad just prior to the global slowdown in 2008, when it committed to purchase A380s and, in a move that looks not particularly bright in hindsight, leveraged itself up to purchase budget airline Air Deccan.

I would absolutely NOT recommend buying a ticket on Kingfisher at this point.

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  1. I am already noticing slightly higher fares on domestic flights in India – perhaps due to the lack of competition on some routes.

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