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State to cover repatriation cost of stranded Cobalt passengers (updated)

The state will be covering the cost of repatriation of passengers who were left stranded after Cypriot carrier Cobalt Air terminated its operations late on Wednesday, Transport Minister Vasiliki Anastasiadou said.

The minister said those passengers will have to return home by October 24.

“Our aim is for everyone to return home,” said.

The state will be covering the cost of a one-way ticket but not any extra accommodation costs incurred by passengers. Those would have to be claimed from the company.

“As a state we feel the need to help passengers, either stranded in Cyprus or abroad, to return to the place of residence.”

Earlier, a meeting was held to discuss the problems arising from the closure of Cobalt Air at midnight Wednesday.

A transport ministry statement issued Thursday said passengers who were travelling on Wednesday and Thursday on flights that were cancelled should secure one-way economy tickets to travel home.

They must present proof of purchase to the ministry’s accounts department to be reimbursed, the statement said.

The ministry said a new announcement will provide further information regarding the submission of the claims for reimbursement.

Any passengers Cypriot and foreign who were travelling on Cobalt Air by October 24, and wish to return home, can contact TopKinisis: 22869999 and OrthodoxouTravel: 24841100 to arrange for a one-way ticket for repatriation whose cost will be covered by the state.

Passengers who bought tickets using cards should contact their banks for information regarding reimbursement.

The ministry said the state was not legally bound to make such arrangements but it wanted to facilitate passengers.

The arrangements did not clear the company from any obligations towards its customers, the ministry said.

 

The airline carried some 2,500 to and from Cyprus daily but the number of those affected was not immediately known.

A Cypriot who was scheduled to fly back from London on Thursday afternoon told the Cyprus Mail Cobalt only sent him a text message asking him to check his email. The email said his flight was cancelled and nothing else.

“I haven’t tried to book, I don’t know how long it’s going to be. I might have to spend an extra night in London,” he said.

 

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