CARLSBAD, Calif. (KGTV) - For the second time this year, Carlsbad-based airline, Cal Jet, has abruptly canceled all scheduled flights and stopped booking new flights indefinitely.
Kelly Skemps was scheduled to fly from McClellan-Palomar airport to Las Vegas on Friday for her brother’s 50th birthday. But Thursday morning she got a call and a text alerting her that her flight had been canceled.
“I was shocked,” said Skemps, who admits she was initially excited for the airline to be open.
“I thought it was going to be perfect,” she said.
Cal Jet bills itself as an easy and competitively-priced flight option from North County to Las Vegas.
But this is the second time the small airline has inconvenienced customers by cancelling flights and blocking out their schedule.
In February, Cal Jet went dark for nearly two weeks. President George Wozniak said the company they lease the plane from, Elite Air, needed it to fly NCAA basketball players.
When they finally resumed operations in March, Wozniak told 10News, “we feel very confident going forward that we have the extra crew and airplanes necessary to fulfill that travel mission for these people.”
Cal Jet did not respond to a request for comment after the latest round of cancellations, though a customer service representative attributed the problems to a lack of “aircraft and crew availability.”
In an email to customers sent late Thursday, Cal Jet attributed the temporary closure to their efforts to expand to other cities.
"...the Carlsbad to Las Vegas service will be suspended as of April 18, 2018, as the new schedule and times are finalized. Once we have added the additional aircraft and crew, we will restart Las Vegas and add Oakland, and Phoenix by the end of June, followed by San Jose, Cabo, and Sacramento in late July."
No timetable was given as to when they will start taking bookings again.
For now, Skemps said she plans on driving to Las Vegas instead. While she was given a full refund, the whole ordeal has made her skeptical to try Cal Jet again.
“I really want to use the airline. I want to use the local airport. But I’ve been burned now and I’ve lost the trust.”