Some European carriers adjust, thrive in new landscape

Monarch, Air Berlin, and Alitalia have been forced to close. Ryanair is facing a giant PR disaster. Even the vaunted Gulf carriers are going through some growing pains.

However, as The Telegraph reports, other airlines are flourishing in this climate.

Two airlines that have seen their stocks rise recently are Ryanair rivals easyJet and Norwegian. Norwegian’s cheap long-haul flights have proved very profitable, and easyJet’s passenger numbers continue to increase.

Norwegian executives said the airline’s growth in September was largely due to their inexpensive long-haul services, which were proving quite popular with customers.

The airline had a load factor – which measures how full the average plane is – of 90 percent, which is quite strong. Norwegian served over 3 million passengers in September, a 14 percent increase over passenger loads in September 2016.

Interest has increased in Norwegian’s long-haul flights to the United States. More Europeans are considering the U.S. as a vacation destination now that formerly popular locations in Turkey and North Africa are perceived as less safe. Norwegian has recently started service to Denver and Seattle.

easyJet had a load factor of 93.6 percent and served 7.7 million passengers. That represented an increase of 11 percent.

According to data from online travel company Skyscanner, airfares in Europe are becoming more expensive. Skyscanner’s data showed flight prices in October have increased an average of 23 percent.

Haley Shearer, growth manager at Skyscanner, said prices on flights to Malaga, Barcelona, Milan, Dublin, and Alicante all increased in October.

Industry experts had predicted the closure of airlines like Monarch would lead to higher flight prices. Monarch’s closure was the largest failure in British aviation history.

Greybull Capital’s founder Marc Meyohas said Monarch’s failure was due to a “bloody hurricane” of Brexit, a weakened pound, and terrorism. Greybull is now Monarch’s largest creditor.

Monarch’s administration is being handled by the firm KPMG. Over 1,800 of the airlines’ 2,100 employees have already been laid off.

Elsewhere in British aviation news, Thomas Cook pilots agreed to binding arbitration with the carrier. Under this arrangement, both the airline and the pilots will have to accept the arbitrator’s decision.

About the Author

Svilen Petrov
My name is Svilen Petrov and I’m founder and chief editor at Wings Journal. Wings Journal is an independent media, which provides you daily with the most interesting and actual news for air companies, airports, and aviation technologies.

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