Flights grounded after Iceland’s WOW air ceases operations

FILE PHOTO: Skuli Mogensen, CEO of WOW air, poses with cabin crew members during a delivery ceremony of his first Airbus A321neo, during the 52nd Paris Air Show at Le Bourget Airport near Paris
FILE PHOTO: Skuli Mogensen, CEO of WOW air, poses with cabin crew members during a delivery ceremony of his first Airbus A321neo, during the 52nd Paris Air Show at Le Bourget Airport near Paris, France June 21, 2017. REUTERS/Pascal Rossignol/File Photo

March 28, 2019

(Reuters) – Iceland’s WOW air said on Thursday it had ceased operations and all its flights have been canceled, the latest budget airline to go out of business.

WOW, focused on low-cost travel across the Atlantic, advised passengers to check available flights with other airlines.

The announcement from WOW came after it had earlier postponed flights on Thursday as it entered the final stages of an equity raising with a group of investors.

WOW had ended talks with rival Icelandair last Sunday.

WOW is the latest budget airline to go out of business as the European airline sector grapples with over-capacity and high fuel costs. Recent failures include Britain’s Flybmi and Primea Air.

Founded in 2011, the airline uses smaller single-aisle planes to fly between Iceland and many destinations in the United States and Europe.

Norwegian Air has a little over half of the market share in the fast-growing, low-cost, long-haul transatlantic market, while WOW controlled a quarter in 2018 when it flew a total of 3.5 million passengers.

(Reporting by Tommy Lund; editing by Darren Schuettler/Keith Weir)

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