SAS’ losses delay new routes

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Scandinavian Airlines (SAS), which reported another round of heavy losses this week, probably won’t be introducing new long-haul flights from Norway during the next year as planned. Cutbacks are now expected to delay any new non-stop flights to the US by at least a year.

Newspaper Aftenposten reported that new routes, due to be announced earlier this year, now aren’t expected to be introduced until the spring. That means they probably won’t start operating until some time in 2016.

SAS officials remained upbeat despite the disappointing pre-tax loss of SEK 450 million in the fourth quarter that ended November 30. They insisted they weren’t giving up the fight against low-fare carriers, with SAS’s Norwegian director claiming that SAS had raised fares on domestic flights in Norway and that passengers had accepted them.

The airline, he said, is promoting itself on the basis of quality and reliability, and hopes passengers will continue to be attracted even if SAS doesn’t have the lowest fare available. It’s also targeting passengers aged 30 to 55, reported state broadcaster NRK, in the belief that segment of the market will be willing to pay higher fares in return for more comfortable and less stressful travel.

SAS pilots have also recently called for a return to regulation and higher fares to maintain safety in the skies.

newsinenglish.no staff