Can Norwegian Air Continue To Fly Into 2019?

Just before the new year, it was revealed that Norwegian was clinging to life.

The airline’s loans were coming due, and if it didn’t have a cash injection or prove that its business model (of low-cost long-haul air travel) was sustainable, it would soon be bankrupt.

Now that day has come, and many are asking for an update on one of the world’s most beloved airlines.

Norwegian
Norwegian is reportedly days away from a “full crisis”. Photo: Norwegian

What is Norwegian’s current situation?

To shore up some cash, the airline has decided to sell five of its Airbus aircraft and tweak it’s route network to allow their planes to be flying more often (rather than sitting around on the tarmac).

This has led to investors relaxing and the airline appears to have stabilized for now.

After all, we do know that IAG (International Airlines Group, owner of British Airways) is very keen to secure Norwegian and has thus far bought 5% of the shares on the market. They have not sold these shares and not raised any concerns about the operation of the airline (which, ironically, as investors, they would have every right to).

Norwegian
2019 has been a rough year for Norwegian. Photo: Norwegian

And it seems that the bulk of the winter fuel rise is over and that if Norwegian was going to fail, it would have already. We saw the rapid collapse of several airlines leading up to Christmas (such as Primera Air and Cobalt Air) and many industry commentators, including the CEO of Ryanair, suggested Norwegian would be next.

It doesn’t help that they have a jet stranded in Iran, unable to fly.

Norwegian however, seems to have been very flexible and has managed to starve off their creditors. They did this by firstly employing a large fleet of fuel-saving aircraft, such as the Boeing 787 Dreamliner, on their most expensive international routes. Secondly, they have aggressively chased after monopoly routes such as the London to Rio route that was exclusively operated by One World British Airways.

Norwegian Air
The announcement graphic from the Norwegian website.

Thirdly, Norwegian has also expanded into international markets that their business model can easily take advantage of. Places like Argentina, who only recently allowed the domestic aviation market to become deregulated.

Lastly, the recent sale of these five Airbus aircraft to pay back their most urgent loans seems to have bought them enough time to remain in the skies.

What about in the future?

Norwegian has really proven themselves to be dynamic and unstoppable, and we at Simple Flying think they will be solvent a little longer. This is including the Christmas disruption at Gatwick Airport due to drones a week ago,  in which Norwegian hired the HiFly A380 to help customers proves that they have the working capital to solve problems that might stump other airlines.

Norwegian in winter
Karlson says Norwegian will be dropping some routes for the winter season.

What do you think? Will Norwegian last another six months? Let us know in the comments

 

 

 

13 comments
  1. Fly Norwegian at your own peril! My wife and I were booked to fly Norwegian from BCN to EWR on 8th Nov 2018. They rebooked us to a flight two days earlier, without telling us. We were left on our own at the airport in front of empty passenger service counters. I wrote them to request a refund and after almost two months have yet to hear from them.

    1. Maybe you should have provided when booking an email address or phone number? As any other airline Norwegian is very good about letting customer know when there are flight disruptions. I had a flight delayed with Norwegian and I got a SMS and an email letting me know. So, let’s be fair and don’t blame Norwegian for your own shortcomings.

  2. We flew Norwegian from London Gatwick to the East Coast and we were thrilled with the quality of the cabin, the politeness of the staff, and the quality of the food which we purchased. Admittedly, we had to pay for the food and drink that we wanted, but with the huge savings we made on the ticket, we could afford to buy a lot more food and drink than we did!

  3. We have already flew 6 times with Norwegian. JFK to FdF for half the price we would have to pay somewhere else, for a direct flight (4 hours instead of 18 + a hotel night), with WiFi, we can afford water/tea/juice and sandwiches. Andrew is right, give them all info necessary to reach you. They send emails, texts to keep you up to date to everything. Staff is nice, helpful, I’ve been travelling all over the world, trust me I’ve seen worse, a lot…
    Let’s be realistic, some companies are VERY expensive because you do not have choices. I like to travel if I can do it better for less, I will. Norwegian is good, I want to keep them in NYC.

  4. Exactly what are “Nick’s” credentials to be commenting on complex issues such as aviation management and finance? I see absolutely zero substantive reporting, just a hack job on Norwegian. I’m guessing a troll paid by the likes of O’Leary?

    Sorry boys, but wishful thinking is not analysis.

    Absolute clickbait garbage.

    1. Thanks for the comment Bart.

      “Norwegian has really proven themselves to be dynamic and unstoppable, and we at Simple Flying think they will be solvent a little longer.” – We are fully behind Norwegian and at no point is this article inaccurate or biased against Norwegian. So I’m not sure how you think we are paid by rival airlines (who don’t even operate in the same market at Norwegian). That being said, if Ryanair did want to pay us to write ‘hack jobs’, then please do put them in touch!

    2. Norwegian are probably the best airline I’ve flown with can’t fault them and their prises are dead cheap. Can’t see a reason to complain or listen to hate muppets 😂

  5. I just got off of another Norwegian flight last night from LGW to FLL. I have used Norwegian for the past 3 years and have enjoyed every minute of their flights….even paid for upgrade to premium class. Their flight crews are outstanding and the 787’s are wonderful aircraft. i couldn’t be happier.

  6. Hands down Norwegian set the place for the new airline travel model. They make the news, people, because others want them to fail. They offer nice planes, affordable travel at a price others are not willing to compete with. Yes, fuel goes up and down so tickets change. Go Norwegian! Can’t wait to travel the world with you!

  7. I’ve heard nothing but good reviews from people I know who’ve travelled a LOT and who’ve subsequently travelled Norwegian. Nothing but GOOD reviews. We will be trying them for the first time LGW to SFO in June and looking forward. Also, what others have said – make sure you give them an email or a number to text you any updates; so far, I have been updated on minor time changes. Even if you hadn’t, how do you show up for a flight without having checked on it’s status at LATEST the day before?

    On another note – nervously tried Primera in September of 2018 Stansted – EWR (just before they announced administration) and was amazed at how wonderful the whole service was. We also travel a LOT and this was hands down the BEST flight we’ve ever taken. (Even over Virgin 1st). Was very sad to see the airline fail.

  8. I booked a flight for me and my daughter from Chicago O’hare to London Gatwick this past fall. I received a text 5 hours before that it would be delayed. Four hours before I received a text that it would be cancelled (technical problems). We had a hotel booked and train tickets so it could have caused some extra expenses with rescheduling. Called to re-book and nothing was available for the next day. Fortunately I was able to go online and book with WOW which had a layover so we ended up in London 6 hours later than originally planned. The silver lining was per EU rules Norwegian had to compensate me $700 per ticket in addition to refunding the ticket. The ticket refund came through automatically and filing for the compensation was done through Norwegians website and wasn’t too difficult. Took about a month for the compensation to come through. Plan to go again in a few months however I’m a little concerned about their financial condition.

  9. I am getting ready to fly Norwegian for the fourth time to Copenhagen. I have no complaints other than I wish they flew to Jacksonville, Florida so I wouldn’t have to drive to Orlando! 787 Dreamliner is fast and comfortable. Their food is tasty and nutritional. I want them to continue flying

  10. Loved Norwegian in April 2019. LAX-MAD and CDG-LAX the prices were hard to beat – like half price compared to other carriers. 787 Dreamliner was the best flight – higher cabin pressures, higher humidity, warmer temperatures, and great mood lighting to keep you in good shape when you land. Had the least amount of jet lag compared to flying with older planes.
    Let’s hope Norwegian makes it for the future!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recommended Stories: