The Oslo-based low-cost carrier announced that due to increasing demand from its passengers and other carriers upping their frequencies in Europe, Norwegian will increase the scale of its operations starting July 1, 2020.
In total, the airline plans to resume flights on 76 routes across the continent and add 12 aircraft to serve the resumed services, indicated Norwegian in a statement. As of now, the low-cost carrier has operated eight aircraft on domestic routes in Norway, as it was obliged to do so after receiving a state-guaranteed loan from the Norwegian government.
The restart, scheduled for July 1, 2020, will focus on leisure destinations, including Greece, Spain, and other “key European cities,” stated the airline. Furthermore, as a result of 12 aircraft returning to service, the company will return around 200 pilots and 400 cabin crew members from furloughs. All in all, more than 300 pilots and 600 cabin crew members will return to work as Norwegian ramps up its operations.
“Feedback from our customers has shown that they are keen to get back in the air and resume their travels with Norwegian beyond the current domestic services that we have been operating,” stated the chief executive of the airline, Jacob Schram.
“Norwegian is returning to European skies with the reintroduction of more aircraft to serve our key destinations which will ensure that we remain in line with competing carriers.”
Norwegian will mainly resume flights from three Scandinavian capitals, namely Copenhagen, Oslo and Stockholm, as the airline enters its “New Norwegian” strategy phase. The new strategy includes downsizing operations in terms of routes and fleet and establishing itself as a low-cost carrier primarily in the Scandinavian region, rather than trying to pilot new and unproven routes. Its base in London-Gatwick (LGW) is set to remain, however, as Norwegian has established itself as a prominent player there.