In the last few days the charter marketer Green Airlines caused quite a stir, because in just one week they lost two “airline partners”. After only a few legs, the Bulgarian Alk Air withdrew the almost 30-year-old Boeing 737-300 and the Romanian Just Us Air never came because they never signed a contract. The result: stranded passengers complaining to the media about the behavior of Green Airlines.
On the homepage the company presents itself as an airline and even presents a fleet, but you don't own a single aircraft and on top of that you are not an airline approved by a European aviation authority. Many ticket buyers may not have been fully aware of this fact, because, unlike real airlines, there is no ongoing check of financial performance, on which the operating license is dependent.
Mailbox service provider resides at the company headquarters
But even the company address of Green Airlines raises many questions, because at Bahnhofsplatz 12 in Karlsruhe, Germany, there is not an administration with nominated persons (formerly postholders), flight operations managers and everything else that belongs to an airline, but a provider for mailbox addresses and Co-working spaces. Design Offices is called and on the homepage can be read among other things: “With a representative business address, you convince customers and business partners at first glance and thus also increase your company's success. The DO Address from Design Offices offers a top presence in an exclusive environment and increases your customer contacts. In addition to a reliable postal service, it offers access to a professional work environment for everyone who travels a lot for business. " Incidentally, the costs for this are 149 euros per month.
What Green Airlines actually does at the “company headquarters” is therefore also unclear, as it is claimed in job advertisements, for example, that the headquarters are located at Paderborn Airport. Nobody there knows anything about the administrative headquarters of this non-airline.
Sole shareholder and managing director lives 300 kilometers away
Another indication that the company headquarters registered in the commercial register and “rented” from design offices could only be a so-called “virtual office” is the fact that sole owner and managing director Stefan Auwetter has registered his residence in Bavaria in the Ebersberg district. From there it is well over 300 kilometers by road to the company headquarters. It seems rather unlikely that the managing director of his own statements according to the “climate fair airline” spends more than 600 kilometers in the car every day. The documents stored in the commercial register also provide an indication of this, because these were not certified by Baden notaries, but by Bavarian notaries who are only about 16 kilometers away from the residence of the sole shareholder and managing director stated on the documents.
Customers let off steam on social media
In social media, Green Airlines apologizes for the fact that flights were canceled at short notice and that the “hotline”, which lands on a cell phone provider's box, is difficult to reach “because of the high volume”. You are indirectly asking that you should contact us via email. The reactions of our own representations after cheated customers were not long in coming. It is noteworthy that there was no public reaction on the part of Green Airlines to reclaims and questions regarding passenger rights and the associated compensation payments, at least at the weekend.
It will be exciting to see how the police and the public prosecutor will handle the alleged criminal charges, for which the authorities have not (yet) received any official confirmation. If it should prove to be the case that tickets were sold even though the aircraft in question had not been rented at all and was therefore not at all able to provide the service sold, this could have repercussions. According to Austrian law, it should be pointed out in this context that the presumption of innocence must apply to all natural and legal persons who may be involved.