Merry Christmas from Maxjet. The discount all-business class airline shut down all its operations today — on Christmas Eve — when it declared bankruptcy earlier in the day.
The airline’s demise was no surprise — see this post — but passengers are now left scrambling to find alternate ways to and from their destinations, with some help.
MAXjet said it was working with rival all-business class Eos Airlines to find alternative routes. Meanwhile, Continental Airlines and Silverjet Aviation Ltd., another all-business class carrier, said they would honor limited numbers of MAXjet tickets.
“Honoring” tickets doesn’t mean they’ll do it entirely for free, but the cost is minimal. Continental’s rules for accepting these Maxjet tickets state:
MAXjet customers will be accepted for travel on a standby basis on Continental flights between Los Angeles/Las Vegas/Newark and London Gatwick from Dec. 24, 2007 through January 6, 2008. Passengers will be charged a $50 per flight segment ticketing fee, plus any applicable taxes and security fees. Continental will waive the current fuel service charge normally required for Newark to London passengers.
Note that they don’t state that they’ll transport you in business class, just that they’ll transport you on a standby basis. Lesson: If you want to fly in business class, and if Eos or Silverjet will take you, take advantage of that (especially if it’s the superior service at Eos). Call them first before you just show up at the airport with your Maxjet scrip.
Also: if you haven’t started your travels yet, you may not be able to simply swap carriers. Getting a refund — if possible — may be the better option. Notify your credit card company and let them know. If you bought through a travel agent, call them ASAP.
Maxjet’s homepage has an apology and some instructions, too.
For those left with this conundrum, my condolences, and best wishes for finding a way home, or wherever Maxjet was going to take you. Feel free to report back with tales of how you got there and back.