Tourists Stranded in Vanuatu after Air Vanuatu B737 was Repossessed

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Air Vanuatu is the lifeline for this small independent Pacific country, and it had to seize operation. It’s unclear if investors could be found to safe the airline. In the meantime travel from and to this remote island country  is interrupted

A report by the liquidators says collapsed airline Air Vanuatu owes creditors at least US$73.5 million. Its only Boeing 737 aircraft was repossessed in Melbourne, Australia.

Travelers were stranded last week when the Vanuatu government placed its national carrier into voluntary liquidation. Many tourists stranded were from New Zealand unable to fly home from Port Vila.

Currently Virgin Australia flies from Vanuatu to Brisbane, and Fiji Airlines operators to Nandi, Fiji.

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Tourists Stranded in Vanuatu after Air Vanuatu B737 was Repossessed

Air Vanuatu’s overall deficit is US$65.9 million. It owes creditors US$73.5 million, but the real numbers may be significantly higher.

The liquidator, Ernst & Young, said that without the government’s support, Air Vanuatu would be out of business forever.

Only two of the airline’s six aircraft, including the repossessed Boeing 737, are flight-ready.

Aviation experts are currently conducting inspections on the aircraft, but there is still uncertainty regarding the timeframe for their resumption. Ernst & Young plans to make efforts to sustain the airline, contingent on obtaining sufficient funding and retaining crucial stakeholder backing while simultaneously exploring potential future alternatives.

The airline posted the following information:

Air Vanuatu

Air Vanuatu entered liquidation on 9 May 2024, and Morgan Kelly, Andrew Hanson, and Justin Walsh of EY have been appointed as Joint and Several Liquidators of the Company.

All flights have been grounded with immediate effect.


If you are due to fly with Air Vanuatu, please DO NOT TRAVEL TO THE AIRPORT unless you have arranged an alternative flight with another airline. Please note that Air Vanuatu is unfortunately not able to arrange alternative flights for passengers at this stage.

If you have a booking sold by another airline that includes travel on an Air Vanuatu flight, please contact the relevant airline or travel agent to confirm if there is any impact to your travel plans.

Customers are also advised to monitor the Civil Aviation Authority Vanuatu website for further information (

If you require any further information or assistance, please contact the Liquidators by email at [email protected].


In the event that you were an employee of the Company and you require further information or assistance in relation to the Liquidation, please contact the Liquidators at [email protected].

Creditors and Suppliers

In the event that you were a supplier or creditor of the Company and you require further details in relation to the Liquidation, please direct your queries to the Liquidators’ office on [email protected].

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(eTN): Tourists Stranded in Vanuatu after Air Vanuatu B737 was Repossessed | re-post license post content


About the author

Juergen T Steinmetz

Juergen Thomas Steinmetz has continuously worked in the travel and tourism industry since he was a teenager in Germany (1977).
He founded eTurboNews in 1999 as the first online newsletter for the global travel tourism industry.

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