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LIAT apologises to its customers

LIAT apologises to its customers

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An apology has been made to LIAT customers for the lapse in service that they have been experiencing in the past months.{{more}}

While speaking at a Caribbean Development Bank (CDB)/LIAT loan signing ceremony on August 9, chairman of the Board of Directors for LIAT Dr Jean Holder issued an apology to LIAT customers for the company’s poor service.

Holder explained that the company has embarked upon re-fleeting their planes, replacing the older ones with newer models and training their pilots and engineers how to fly and service the new aircraft.

“It has been hard on the public, for which I apologize, and it has been hard on the LIAT staff. On reflection, the public should have been made aware much earlier of what LIAT was attempting to do, the timing of which was largely driven by external circumstances, and that disruptions in the service would be inevitable. At this point I promise you, however, that LIAT must and will do better,” Holder said.

In his remarks, the chairman noted that in 2012, the frequent breakdown of the company’s 20-year-old aircraft had made keeping up with the schedules of Caribbean islands difficult.

He said the company’s efforts to correct the problems to ensure the safety of their customers resulted in poor on-time performance and customer dissatisfaction. The company was therefore forced to look at alternative methods to correct the problem.

“A re-fleeting committee was therefore established in 2012, which examined what needed to be done, the pros and cons of different types of aircraft, what they would cost and where they would fly,” Holder said.

“Ultimately, after considering several factors, the fleet committee recommended that the best decision was to change the entire fleet at a cost of US$100 million and that the process had to begin without delay.”

As a result, the CDB is assisting LIAT to modernize their fleet, by issuing a loan of US$65 million.

The chairman expressed a heartfelt thank you to the president and board of the CDB for approving the loan and pledged the unwavering gratitude of LIAT’s stakeholders.

Holder further stated that because of the loan agreement, seven of the 12 new aircraft will be in place and providing the public with a better and more comfortable air transportation service across the Caribbean, by mid-January 2014.

“We are also aware that the stresses and strains of the summer have tested the quality of our customer service and we are hard at work with a number of expert agencies in this area seeking to achieve the desired standards,” Holder added.

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