The troubles for grounded airlines Go First and Jet Airways keep continue to mount as both have lost their airline codes for being non operational. The two letter designator codes G8 and 9W codes, assigned by International Air Transport Association (IATA) a global trade association of world’s airlines, stands withdrawn for both airlines.
“One of the requirements for a company to be eligible for an IATA two letter designator is that the airline needs to be operating,” said the head of communications at IATA.
“As Go First ceased to operate commercial flights in early May 2023, it is currently not eligible for the IATA two letter designator. The same applies to the 9W designator as well,” he further added.
The withdrawal of the airline code could potentially disrupt ticketing, reservations and baggage handling operations of these airlines. Besides logos and taglines, these codes also become an identity for airlines. Losing them up means losing the uniqueness.
In addition, companies assigned an IATA airline designator code use them for reservations, schedules, timetables, telecommunications, ticketing, cargo documentation, legal, tariffs and/or other commercial/traffic purposes.
The designator and numeric codes remain blocked for 12 months, during which the airline can ask for the reinstatement of the designator if the requirements are met. Go First did not responded to queries at the time of going print but a Jalan-Kalrock spokesperson said, “The 9W code is held by Jet Airways and is currently under preservation with IATA as it is to be used only for commercial operations. It will be de-preserved upon recommencement of operations.”
Go First, the formerly Wadia group-controlled low-cost airline, losing its airline code comes a few days after the troubled airline announced its decision to extend cancellation of all flights till September 5.
September 2 marks four months since the last of Go First’s aircraft took flight before its management pleaded for bankruptcy protection. Go First had a fleet of 57 aircraft, comprising leased planes, before it halted all operations. It has been struggling to restart operations ever since.
The chances of Go First resuming operations look bleak as one of its lessors Jackson Square Aviation Ireland moved the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) to prevent its aircraft leased by Go First from being used to resume its flight operations.
The successful bidder, Jalan-Kalrock (JKC), of full-service carrier Jet Airways, on Thursday had announced infusion of Rs 100 crore into the airline, within two days after the NCLAT directed it to do so. With this JKC claims to have infused Rs 250 crore into Jet Airways. A balance of Rs 100 crore is required to be infused before September 30.
Civil aviation regulator, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) had granted a limited period renewal of Jet Airways’ air operator’s certificate (AOC) in August. This renewal was for a period of one month and is due to get lapsed on September 3, 2023.
After grounding all flights in April 2019 following mounting financial troubles, Mumbai-based Jet Airways was admitted to the corporate insolvency resolution process where JKC emerged as the winning bidder two years later.