Norwegian airline Widerøe to make cuts with 4,000 flights to be cancelled

Norwegian airline Widerøe to make cuts with 4,000 flights to be cancelled
Photo: Valentin Hintikka /Creative Commons
Norway’s regional airline Widerøe is to cut 15 percent of departures on its short-haul timetable, totalling 4,000 flights annually.

The company announced on Monday that it would make significant cuts to its short-haul services, broadcaster NRK reports.

The remote Evenes municipality is expected to particularly feel the effects of the decision, with routes to northern destinations Bodø and Andenes both scrapped by the company, according to the report.

The changes will take effect from May 4th this year.

North Norway will be hit most by the cutbacks in general, with routes to and from Bodø and Tromsø to go. However, connections to Oslo and Bergen will also be affected.

“We are unfortunately cutting necessary public transport in regional Norway,” Widerøe CEO Stein Nilsen said in a press statement reported by NRK.

“Since the introduction of the passenger tax in 2016 we have struggled to find profitability on the shortest routes with the smallest planes. The negative trend has intensified each year,” Nilsen told the broadcaster.

The devaluation of the Norwegian krone, old aircraft and general market development in Norway were also cited as factors behind the cuts.

“In total, the depreciation of the Norwegian krone and tax increases amount to 400 million over two or three years. We can't withstand that,” the CEO said.

Routes for which Widerøe is paid by the Norwegian state to fly, known as FOT routes, will not be affected by the cuts.

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