Mango flight special ends in chaos as frustrated customers lose money for no bookings

Mango has urged customers to contact the airline through its social media platforms.
Mango has urged customers to contact the airline through its social media platforms.
Image: REUTERS/Rogan Ward

A flight special run by Mango airlines on Tuesday ended in chaos as hundreds of irate customers complained that they did not get bookings despite parting with their money.

Samantha Singh told TimesLIVE she tried to book a flight from Lanseria, Johannesburg, to Durban for Wednesday evening.

“The Mango Facebook page had a special of flights from R299. My flight was R300. I tried five times and out of that I only managed to reverse two payments. I did not get any flight,” said Singh.

“There is just a blanket response, saying, 'We have a high volume traffic. We have technical issues'.

“I sat on the phone with Mango for an hour. Neither did I get my booking done nor my refund. I was literally just cut off.”

She said the initial price of the flight she was trying to book was R281.25.

“All of a sudden, the flight went up to R299 and when I called the contact centre to book it, they refused to give it to me for either R281 or R299. They wanted me to pay R450 for it.

“I tried to fight it and I demanded a refund for the money I had already paid.”

“We hope to get our money back because we don't know what is going on,” Kubamelo Masinge wrote on Mango's Facebook page. “I am trying to book flights for Cape Town for 28 Feb — 2 March. Your website is pathetic, your contact centre THE WORST! Can I get someone to help me? You run a special, but don’t have the capacity to handle the influx of traffic.”

“This is terrible service and the lack of response is pathetic!!! You receive payment yet no booking confirmed now the sale is over? Absolutely pathetic. Honour the payments received by delivering on the flights people booked ... It's the right thing to do,” said Pranitha Ramkissoon.

Mango Airlines' spokesperson Sergio Dos Santos said they had an “overwhelming” response to the special, which led to technical issues.

“There were a couple of challenges. The system ran into difficulty,” Dos Santos said.

He said the airline was dealing with the queries. “We urge our customers to get hold of us through our social media platforms. We will be dealing with the issues case by case.”