Air NZ ‘apparently not’ running dodgy auctions

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Air NZ has been auctioning seats off on http://www.sella.co.nz and as I’ve posted previously, there seems to be one ‘buyer’ in particular that has bid on just about every auction, won none, but succeeded in pushing up the prices of auctions.

[original post removed]

However, we have received correspondence from Air NZ (see comments below) that emphatically denies that they are involved with any bidders and asked us to remove this article.

The comment is politely, but legalistically worded, and therefore we are happy to accept that they are running perfectly legitimate auctions and that we are incorrect in our assumptions. We regret any offence our statements may have caused to Air NZ and any inference Air NZ have acted unethically.

Here’s hoping ‘whitepele252’ gets that trip soon!

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  1. Good morning. Thanks for your feedback. The team at sella can confirm that Whitepele252 is a genuine bidder who has been verified through the sella identification methods (phone , email, and address ). This sella user is completely independent of Air NZ and sella.co.nz and is just a keen holiday goer. Please rest assured that sella takes the security and credibility of our site very seriously and if we had any doubts as to the genuine nature of this bidder we would act on this. Feel free to give us a call or email if you wish to be taken through the verification all users can go through. Happy bidding

  2. Hi There,

    It’s in no doubt that this bidder is a real person. The address verification process does not ask any questions about employment and this has no bearing on whether a person actually exists or not.

    I would imagine it would be difficult for any online auction service provider to know whether somebody was not a phantom bidder, as the system is based on trust.

    Cheers

    Consumist

    • Scott Giles – Air New Zealand
    • November 28th, 2008

    I wish to respond to your postings suggesting that we have acted inappropriately in our weekly grabaseat auctions. The sella.co.nz member ‘whitepele252’ is a genuine bidder and is in no way associated with Air New Zealand or Sella..

    You continue to draw an inference that Air New Zealand has deliberately driven up the price of the auctions. This is a serious allegation and one which we expressly deny. In association with Sella we are carefully monitoring the validity of the bidders. The auctions each have a genuine $1 reserve price and the market has set the price over the last four weeks.

    The auctions have been extremely popular, often selling for less than half the standard retail price. The bidders who managed to secure them have all been extremely happy with the price they paid for the flights.

    I would ask that you retract your comments that we have acted unethically in this regard.

    Scott Giles
    Air New Zealand

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