Africa & the Middle East Forums

Post New Topic

Recent Activity

View all Africa & the Middle East activity »
  1. 1 First time Safari - any comments on Wild Wings/Taga Safari companies?
  2. 2 Route planning and advice visiting Southern Africa by car.
  3. 3 Trip Report South Africa Kgalagadi & Kruger back-to-back in 2016
  4. 4 March Trip to South Africa -- Need Quick Guidance Please!
  5. 5 Alexandria
  6. 6 Dubai in 36 hours
  7. 7 good internet connection option Meknes
  8. 8 Trip Report A very belated TR - South of Namibia with Kgalagadi
  9. 9 Trip Report South Africa trip report
  10. 10 Marrakesh - Expenses
  11. 11 Can gay people travel safely in Morocco?
  12. 12 Morocco Trip End of April - itinerary help please!
  13. 13 Mombasa recomendations please
  14. 14 Private tours in Morocco
  15. 15 Kings Pool vs. Duma Tau
  16. 16 Hotels for Victoria falls
  17. 17 First time to Africa-need help!
  18. 18 How do I know if a company is legit
  19. 19 Point and Shoot camera for a Kenyan Safari
  20. 20 Question about Yellow Fever certificate
  21. 21 The Heat and Dust of Kafue & the Busanga Plains
  22. 22 Has anyone used this company in Uganda
  23. 23 Jewish tour Casablanca
  24. 24 Kenyan Safari Spending Money
  25. 25 Ethiopian security
View next 25 » Back to the top

Beware: Coastal Air

Jump to last reply

Last summer I purchased a ticket on Tanzania’s Coastal Air. After purchasing the ticket I noticed in the terms sent after buying the ticket that there was a 15 kg total baggage limit. This limitation was not, as far as I could tell, mentioned anywhere before the ticket was purchased. After weighing my bags I found that I was about two kg over the limit due to the camping gear that I was bringing along. I searched the travel forums to find whether Coastal strictly adhered to this limit and found that in some cases upset passengers were forced by Coastal to leave baggage behind.

I emailed Coast Air’s helpdesk and asked them to cancel my reservation and refund my fare because I could not meet their baggage restriction. I was sent three separate emails confirming my cancellation with an official PDF of the confirmation of cancellation. The third email also indicated I would be issued a refund. I later discovered another odd email was sent from Coastal with the following message:

“Hi you can cancel and you'll get a full refund because the booking is for july,how many kilos do you have?
Because if the charge you if its znz I think its one or two dollars per extra kg”

This was in response to my original request for cancellation and was sent after the three emails which had already confirmed my cancellation.

It has been over a year now and Coastal Air has still not refunded the money I paid for the cancelled tickets. I have made repeated requests to their billing agent, 3GDirectpay. 3GDirectpay’s initial responses led me to believe a refund would be forthcoming but my last several emails have gone unanswered. In frustration I recently sent both 3G and Coastal Air a message indicating I intended to publicize the situation to warn other travelers of their business practices.

I promptly received a message from a Niala at Coastal Air claiming that my original booking had been cancelled in error. The message contained a copy of an email that Niala claimed had been sent to my email address a year earlier granting me permission to exceed the 15 kg baggage limit with PDF’s of the renewed reservation and boarding passes. Interestingly Niala even included the headers for this message with a date of two days after the cancellation emails and my correct email address. Of course I never received this message and never agreed to rebook the flight. I suggested to Niala that we contact my email provider to find if they have logs of the emails sent to my account at that time to determine whether that email had ever been sent to my account but she was unenthusiastic about the idea.

In the last message I received on the matter Niala told me she would discuss the matter with her manager and get back to me the following Monday. Needless to say Monday came and went and I have heard nothing from Niala or Coastal Air since. I did check the spam folder. Perhaps another phantom email was sent?

I have made four separate trips to Africa over the years visiting ten countries and have, with the exception of Coastal Air and 3Gdirectpay, been very happy with the service I have received from African companies. There are several reputable airlines in East Africa that offer flights on the routes flown by Coastal Air. Do you really want to risk your money with a company that conducts business in this manner?

5 Replies |Back to top

Sign in to comment.

Advertisement