17 SEPTEMBER 2018
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Singapore from Gatwick has become the first Norwegian Airlines major long-haul route to close, with the carrier confirming that no bookings would be taken after a final LGW departure on Thursday 10 January with the closing return Friday 11 January 2019.
The four-times-weekly two-class Boeing B787 service, 12hr 24min, at the time the world’s longest low-cost flight, seemingly did not meet the airline's expectations.
With the airline reticent regarding the reason for the abandonment of the service, speculation has arisen regarding added competition on the route, with Qantas transferring its connecting flights from Dubai, and discounting with services through the Gulf, to serviceability problems with the B787’s Rolls-Royce engines.
Norwegian has applied for Brazilian licensing, similar to its Argentine operation, and with it the possible introduction of flights from Gatwick to either São Paulo or Rio de Janeiro.
Norwegian reported strong passenger growth as it carried more than 3.6m passengers in August. The total number of passengers increased by 10% compared to the same month of the previous year. The load factor was around 90% on the entire route network and 94% on the company’s long-haul routes, operated by the B787 Dreamliner aircraft.
All comments are filtered to exclude any excesses but the Editor does not have to agree with what is being said. 100 words maximum
John Mountifield, Farnham
Interesting to see how the Singapore/easyJet tie-up pans out.