Last Thursday, Fiji Airways had to regrettably cancel the Nadi-Brisbane, and its same-day return Brisbane-Nadi flight due to flight crew illness. All affected passengers were notified and re-scheduled to fly on the Nadi-Brisbane and Brisbane-Nadi flights the next day (Friday) utilising the larger A330 aircraft. There were a series of difficulties which beset our weekend operation for which we must offer our sincere apologies to all those customers affected.
Upon touching down in Brisbane on Friday, Fiji Airways was alerted that the aircraft needed mechanical attention. The comfort and safety of our passengers is our main priority and therefore this necessitated a delay to the departure time for passengers flying Brisbane-Nadi.
Following examination of the aircraft, it was determined the fix required an extra part to be flown in from another city. At that point, the flight was further delayed. Passengers who were connecting to Los Angeles were re-routed to fly direct, while some others were routed to Fiji via Sydney. Others were booked to travel the next day.
Affected passengers were given accommodation and meals at nearby hotels whist awaiting their flights. Unfortunately the aircraft part arrived later than expected leading to a series of rolling delays to the departure time on Saturday. The aircraft was deemed fit to fly on Saturday afternoon and departed Brisbane at 1711 hours.
Also on Saturday, the Melbourne-Nadi flight was delayed due to an ill pilot. This unexpected situation meant a 14 hour delay.
As a result of the two delays outlined above, subsequent Fiji Airways flights to Auckland, Sydney and Los Angeles on Saturday and Sunday were delayed.
We are fully aware of the impact this had on our customers and completely understand the frustrations expressed. Some of the experiences shared were avoidable and we are extremely sorry for the problems and inconvenience encountered. Whilst the events were unforeseen and every effort was taken to accommodate and communicate with our customers, there are clearly lessons to be learnt and so we are using this as an opportunity to review our disruption management protocols.
We are in the process of contacting all affected passengers to offer further assistance and we will also be offering compensation to those affected.