Lion Air passengers stand in a line to claim their tickets money back after their flights were delayed at Soekarno-Hatta airport in Jakarta on Feb. 20, 2015. Hundreds of Lion Air passengers have directed their anger towards the low-cost carrier for numerous flight delays that have occurred since Feb. 18, in the middle of the Chinese New Year holiday. (Reuters Photo/Beawiharta)
Lion Air Pays Rp 526m in Refunds for Plane Delays
FEBRUARY 23, 2015
Jakarta. State airport operator Angkasa Pura II, or AP II, said that Lion Air on Sunday had paid Rp 526 million ($40,000) in ticket refunds to 548 passengers who were affected by flight delays since Wednesday.
AP II had set aside Rp 4 billion from its budget for the refunds, and AP II and Lion Air had agreed on the refunds at Soekarno-Hatta International Airport on Friday.
“The budget is not a loan for Lion Air. It is just to solve the problem for a while. There was no Lion Air crew involved in the ticket refunds. After the refunds, we will return the rest of the budget to our treasury,” AP II president director, Budi Karya Sumadi, said on Sunday.
Lion Air general director Edward Sirait said that Lion Air did not have enough cash on hand at the airport to issue ticket refunds, citing the long weekend of the Lunar New Year holiday. Banks and financial markets were closed on Thursday.
“We had a total of Rp 1.5 billion cash on Thursday, but it was not enough,” Edward said.
Lion Air’s limited cash was also due to tickets being paid by electronic transaction payments, he added.
“Travel agent sales use a top-up system, not cash. Most passengers also pay for the tickets using [bank transfer at] the automated teller machine. That’s why we don’t have much cash. We usually refund by transferring the money,” Edward said.