Brussels Airlines will not resume scheduled flights until at least May 15, with the airline stating that “Extraordinary circumstances require extraordinary measures”.

The Lufthansa Group carrier had previously announced a suspension of operations until April 19, but said that “The ongoing travel restrictions around the world and the continued low to no demand resulting hereof, obliges Belgium’s home carrier to extend the temporary suspension of its operations by another four weeks”.

Brussels Airlines said that all affected customers would be informed by email or phone, and said that customers can opt to rebook tickets for a new departure date or destinations up until August 31, 2020, for travel until April 30, 2021.

In line with other Lufthansa Group airlines, a discount of €50 is being offered per passenger for those opting to rebook rather than seek a refund. Brussels Airlines said that its service centres were experiencing “extraordinary high number of customer requests”, and stressed that passengers do not need to contact the carrier before their original flight date.

The airline is still operating a small number of flights for repatriation and the transport of humanitarian freight, but has extended “temporary technical unemployment for all 4,200 Brussels Airlines employees” in line with the suspension of flights.

“Aiming at a stable flight offer as soon as the operations will resume, Brussels Airlines is at present working on a reduced network responding to the needs of business and leisure travellers,” the airlines said.

“As of the moment of the restart of its operations, the airline will in a gradual approach scale up its network offer according to the demand and needs of the markets it serves. More information on the network offered as of May 15 will be communicated soon.”