Norwegian Air to discontinue transatlantic routes from Ireland

13 Août, 2019, 21:08 | Auteur: Auguste Feret

Norwegian Air (NWC.OL) will stop flying from Ireland to the United States and Canada from mid-September as the routes had become commercially unviable, the company said on Tuesday.

Norwegian launched flights from Ireland to North America in 2017, three years after introducing the UK's first low-priced, long haul flights to the United States.

In a statement, Cork airport said they were disappointed with the news following much-publicised aircraft issues arising from the grounding of the Boeing Max aircraft.

The airline have said "several thousand customers" will be impacted by the route closures.

"We take a strict approach to route management and constantly evaluate route performance to ensure we meet customer demand".

Norwegian has 134 pilots and crew based at Dublin: 48 pilots and 86 cabin crew.

"Compounded by the global grounding of the 737 MAX and the continued uncertainty of its return to service, this has led us to make the hard decision to discontinue all six routes from Dublin, Cork and Shannon".

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The airlines' 80 Dublin-based administrative staff at Norwegian Air International and Norwegian Group's asset company, Arctic Aviation Assets, will not be affected by the route closures.

He adds: "Since March, we have tirelessly sought to minimise the impact on our customers by hiring (wetleasing) replacement aircraft to operate services between Ireland and North America".

Having late last year announced plans to curb its rapid capacity growth and cut costs to stem losses, Norwegian more recently warned that the grounding of the 737 MAX, which makes up 11% of its fleet, may hamper its plans to return to profitability this year.

Norwegian Air began operating routes between Dublin, Cork, Shannon and the U.S., amid much fanfare, in July 2017, carrying 650,000 passengers in that time.

Customers will also be offered a full refund if they no longer wish to travel.

The carrier will continue to offer scheduled services from Dublin to Oslo, Stockholm and Copenhagen as normal.

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