Direct Air suspends all flights for 2 months
Discount airline Direct Air is suspending all flights for two months after it abruptly cancelled its schedule at the height of spring break.
The airline's shutdown following its apparent failure to pay a fuel bill left stranded passengers wondering how and when they'll get home.
Direct Air, based in Myrtle Beach, S.C., says it will not fly until May 15. Ticket holders were told to contact their credit card companies for refunds.
The airline has flights from Lehigh Valley International Airport to Ft. Myers/Punta Gorda, Fla.
Besides being behind in fuel payments, it also had been reported that Direct Air was behind on other payments owed to Lehigh Valley International Airport.
Direct Air's Ed Warneck told The Sun News newspaper of Myrtle Beach, S.C. that the airline missed a fuel payment and the fuel supplier cut it off. So it had to ground its fleet.
The airline serves 17 cities in the Midwest, East and South. It is unclear how many travelers were affected.
The message on Direct Air's Web site merely states:
"Direct Air finds it necessary to suspend flight operation from Tuesday, March 13, 2012 until May 15, 2012. This decision was made to address operational matters. We are currently evaluating strategic alternatives for Direct Air.
"Direct Air is committed to our passengers, employees, and the communities we serve.
"Please check back here for more details."
The suspension could allow the distressed airline time to file for bankruptcy.
It is not clear if tickets purchased for flights after May 15 will be honored if the airflight does resume its operations.