Norwegian Air has announced that starting in September, it will cancel all transatlantic flights from Cork, Dublin and Shannon, Ireland. The airline has stated that these routes are not sustainable under the current conditions the carrier is facing. These cuts also reflect the airline's switch from growth to profitability.
Norwegian has stated the biggest reason for the cuts to the Ireland routes is because of the grounding of the Boeing 737 MAX jets. Norwegian relies heavily on newer, fuel-efficient planes to keep its ticket prices low. Without the MAX jets in service, the low-cost carrier has had to rely on rented planes to maintain the Ireland routes.
Now that it has officially been announced that the Boeing 737 MAX planes will remain grounded at least until the new year, if not longer, Norwegian has had to make changes to its routes, which includes cancellations of routes which are no longer commercially viable.
Last July, the airline hinted it was changing its strategy from growth to profitability, and in September 2018, it canceled transatlantic flights from Edinburgh and Belfast. Norwegian attributed the Scottish government's failure to reduce airline taxes as its reason for cutting these routes. These routes, as well as the three to be canceled next month, were all launched in 2017.
Norwegian has stated that it will continue to offer transatlantic flights from London Gatwick and Manchester, Paris, Barcelona, Oslo and Stockholm. These transatlantic flights reach more than 10 different North American cities.
Norwegian has not shared at this time if it will reinstate these flights once the 737 MAX comes back into service or if a suitable replacement for these jets is found. The airline is focusing on streamlining its services and strengthening its presence in the areas it is still serving.