Thursday, 7 January 2010

Norwegian Air Continues Growth

Low-cost carrier Norwegian had continued strong passenger growth in 2009 and flew 18% more passengers than in 2008 on board its 737 fleet.

In total, the Norwegian airline which is by some estimates Europe's fourth largest airline opened up 63 new routes, including 30 in Denmark, 18 in Sweden and 15 in Norway. In December the Norwegian low cost carrier flew 815,562 passengers. This is an increase of 163,667, equivalent to 25% compared to December last year.

Passenger growth came at a cost though - Yield for December 2009 is expected to be 17% lower than in December 2008. The change is based primarily on the removal of fuel surcharges and changes to network, as well as phasing in new aircraft with more capacity and lower per passenger seat costs.

Cabin factor for the whole group was 76% in December, which is an improvement of two percentage points compared to the same month last year. In terms of operational performance it was not a good month for time keeping. The company carried 99.4% of its scheduled flights in December, of which 61.8% departed on time. Punctuality for the whole year though was a much more respectable 81%.

"December was an exceptional month in terms of precision. The month was characterized by much snow and bad weather on the continent and along the Norwegian coast. In combination with many travellers in December, staffing, especially at Gardermoen, was too small to handle the traffic fast enough. We have now put more effort into to fix the situation, "says CEO Bjorn Kjos.