Norwegian has provided further details of its transformation into a short-haul business, following its decision earlier this month to drop all long-haul routes.
The carrier has published a presentation for creditors, in which it says it plans to become a “de-risked airline focused on a strengthened short-haul network in Europe”.
Norwegian said it would aim for a “profitable core” of routes and markets “that historically have had the strongest performance”, consolidating the business into “Nordic strongholds”.
The airline plans to reduce its fleet to just 50 operational short-haul aircraft this summer – removing around 40 long-haul aircraft and 50 narrow body aircraft.
This will then increase to 68 aircraft by 2022 – 40 based in Norway and 28 throughout Europe.
Norwegian said that the majority of its routes will be “Nordic-touching”, with a split of between 15-20 per cent domestic services, and 80-85 per cent international routes (measured by Available Seat Kilometres).
The carrier described its current situation as “in hibernation”, with just seven to nine aircraft currently in operation.
Norwegian had embarked on a rapid expansion of its long-haul operations between 2010 and 2017, adding numerous routes to the US and Asia. But the carrier has been loss-making long before Covid-19, and in recent years had been forced to drop several routes, including all transatlantic services from Ireland.
It has targeted an April date for exiting the process of Irish Examinership, and will operate aircraft on “Power by the Hour” terms until March 2022, an agreement allowing it to only pay for aircraft when it flies them.