An innovative service that promises ‘free’ plane tickets - GulfToday

An innovative service that promises ‘free’ plane tickets

Free air ticket

Image for illustrative purpose only.

Inayat-ur-Rahman, Deputy Business Editor

Colibra, an innovative flight compensation company, is now available for users in the UAE for the first time with the ‘Fly Now, Pay if Okay’ service, which allows passengers with a valid UAE residency to book flights that they only pay for if their flight arrives on time.

They will have the privilege to be the first in the world to use the pilot version of the product and test this disruptive travel technology.

The Colibra app guarantees UAE residents that if the flight is cancelled or delayed for more than three hours, passengers do not have to pay for their plane tickets at all. This service is entirely free for users of the app, allowing them to book tickets within 30 days before departure (and arrival) and then pay the regular ticket fare if their flight arrives on time or within three hours of its scheduled departure.

By ensuring that passengers only pay for journeys that are not delayed or cancelled, Colibra removes the worry of trying to claim compensations and refunds from airlines and saves its users hours of time and stress.

Kalojan Georgiev, CEO and Co-founder of Colibra told Gulf Today that over the last few years, the UAE has been dominating the aviation and tourism industry creating a world-class destination and leading travel hub in just a few decades.”

 “Moreover, in the current climate the UAE aviation industry has worked hard to sustain its reputation, with its major carrier already operating 85% of its pre-COVID network, continuing to fly to 120 destinations.

“With that said and with the current pandemic causing more and more travellers to postpone or delay travel we couldn’t think of a better ecosystem to launch our service. Colibra is the solution to the future of travel; why pay in advance? Savvy travellers will not need to risk cash-advance for a ticket, they just need to download our app, book a flight, reach the airport, and if the flight arrivals on time and the experience went well, only then would you be charged.”

How does Colibra work:  The passenger chooses a flight - it must depart and arrive within 30 days.

 Adds his/her personal data - Colibra doesn’t charge at the time of booking.  Colibra charges the passenger upon arrival if everything goes smoothly and the service is delivered (ticket’s price is at no extra cost). In all other cases, the user travels for FREE.

Since its launch in 2019, Colibra has gained users from over 170 countries and is recognized as one of the go-to-apps for European travellers. The app has generated over 100,000 installs, 40,000 active users and 50,000 trips registered. Colibra was also rated the #1 Travel App in Czech Republic, Bulgaria, and Cyprus as well as in the top 10 in Greece, Romania, and Poland.

The company’s compensation service was initially launched in 2019 in response to the struggle airline passengers faced in trying to claim compensation for cancelled or delayed flights. Colibra users can secure compensation for any journey that is cancelled or delayed by more than one hour by simply logging their flight details into the app before take-off, no matter the reason for the disruption.

Colibra can be downloaded on both the AppStore and Google Play. ‘Pay If Okay’ Tickets are available to book through the app and are only available for flights that depart and arrive within 30 days.

Meanwhile, there will be no place for traditional airports to operate without advanced and smart technologies in the future which stresses the absolute necessity for airports of the future to enhance security and facilities enabled with smart devices, said Major General Khalifa Ibrahim Al Saleis, Chief Executive Officer, Security Industry Regulatory Agency (SIRA).

Delivering the keynote speech on Future Technologies Enhancing Airport Security at the Global Airport Leaders Forum at the Dubai Airport Show 2021, he said Dubai airport sits in the first place in the world on the number of international travellers with 89.1 million travellers in 2019.

According to the Airport Council International, in the year 2018 there were 8.8 billion passengers at world airports. In 2040 the number is expected to increase to 19.7 billion.  These large number of travellers means that travel procedures need to be simplified, while maintaining the safety and security at the airports and passengers.

We all know that security emigration and health check procedures which make long hours of delay are necessary and cannot be avoided.

Smart airports are the future of air travel because of the smart devices provided to reduce waiting queue, waiting time, reduction in queue for passport control, security check and at duty-free and other outlets.

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