NO FLIGHT: Kasey Gilroy and Wayne Gilroy may miss their friend's wedding because Tigerair has pulled out of flying direct from Proserpine to Sydney.
NO FLIGHT: Kasey Gilroy and Wayne Gilroy may miss their friend's wedding because Tigerair has pulled out of flying direct from Proserpine to Sydney. Contributed

Tigerair cancellation causes travel chaos for couple

A PASSENGER caught up in Tigerair's decision to cut its direct Proserpine to Sydney route could miss out on her friend's wedding because of flight changes.

Mackay's Kasey Gilroy is upset at the company after only buying flights for herself and husband Wayne last week.

The couple had been due to fly from Whitsunday Coast Airport at Proserpine to Sydney on May 23 for a friend's wedding, before returning home on May 25.

With the flight changes now though, Mrs Gilroy does not think it would be worth their while going any more.

Her flight had been due to leave on the Friday morning and get in by lunchtime, giving her enough time to spend the afternoon with the bride-to-be and her friends for a ''girly afternoon'' before the big day.

While Mrs Gilroy says the airline has promised to put them on another Virgin flight on the same day if possible, the only one that leaves Proserpine on a Friday does not get into Sydney until 5.40pm, meaning she would miss all the afternoon activities they had planned.

The new flight time would mean the couple would only get to spend the actual wedding day in Sydney before having to return home.

"If I get there late Friday, it's not worth the money," Mrs Gilroy said.

She is particularly annoyed at the fact she only booked the flights nine days before Tigerair pulled out of the route, saying the airline should not have released those flights to be purchased.

"They would have known it (the route) was up in the air," she said.

Now, she feels the only way she will make it to the wedding is if the flights are changed to leave from Mackay rather than Proserpine.

Even then, with the flight going via Brisbane, it will mean much more actual travelling time, and she will still miss the Friday afternoon activities with her friend.

"Unless we can fly out of Mackay I don't think we're going," Mrs Gilroy said.

"It will end up only being one day away."

Having been organised early, the Gilroys now also stand to lose the money they paid for their accommodation, which is non-refundable, if they do not make it to the wedding.

The Virgin Group - which Tigerair is part of - announced on Wednesday that the airline would not continue the direct route from Whitsunday Coast Airport to Sydney from February 3 as part of a number of changes to its fleet and network.

Whitsunday Regional Council airports and commercial infrastructure general manager Brian Joiner this week said Tigerair would be returning aircraft to lessors as part of the cost-saving measures and this meant some routes would be cut.

"While we are disappointed with the decision made by Tigerair... it is important to remember this is not a reflection on the Whitsunday region," he said.

"Virgin Australia has reconfirmed its regular weekly flight schedule in and out of the Whitsundays and we will continue to work together on opportunities for potential expansion of services in the future."

Customers booked to travel on the cancelled Tigerair services from February 2020 onwards will be notified by the airline and will be reallocated onto other same day services where possible. 


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