More airlines are facing financial troubles as the year goes on

We all know: flying has never been so popular. Everyone has more income and can or will pay more for a trip by plane. Investors are also seeing this trend and set up airlines everywhere. This has serious consequences and this has become very clear in the last 2 years.

2018 will go down in history as one of the most difficult years in aviation. Several airlines went bankrupt and it just doesn’t seem to stop. There are several reasons for the bankruptcy. Especially the fierce competition between the traditional airline and the low-cost airlines is becoming more and more obvious. There is also an oversupply of seats on different flights in more and more parts of the world. India is a prime example of this. Political tensions can also cause prices to rise, such as those of oil. Several have already surrendered. Let us make a short list.

First and foremost, WOW Air. The low-cost airline of several months was in financial difficulties. It even got so far that they had to put planes aside just before the bankruptcy. Icelandair tried to take over her rival, but the negotiations were unsuccessful.

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VLM Airlines. Both VLM Airlines, which had its base at Brussels Airport, and VLM Airlines Antwerp ceased work in 2018. Both were not profitable enough to survive.

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The European airline Small Planet Airlines had divisions in Poland, Germany, Cambodia and Lithuania. All 4 had to close their books due to aircraft problems and delays and high fuel prices.

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SkyWork was a small airlines from Switzerland. They were already in trouble in 2017, but in 2018 it was all over. The company operated from Bern, capital of Switzerland.

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The Cypriot airline Cobalt went overboard before its second birthday. There is talk of fierce competition.

Other airlines that kept it in mind in 2018 included Aserca Airlines from Venezuela, Azur Air Germany, the German branch of successful Azur Air from Russia, Primera Air from Scandinavia had big plans for transatlantic routes, but unfortunately they did not go ahead. In addition, the British Cello Aviation and the Swiss PrivatAir also went bankrupt.

Unfortunately, we see that this trend continues this year. Flybe was sold to Virgin Atlantic. Jet Airways, formerly the largest airline in India, had to keep several planes on the ground because it couldn’t pay the bills anymore. This cost them bankruptcy.

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Other examples of companies in financial difficulties are Air India, South African Airlines, Malaysia Airlines and Norwegian. Norwegian is now also experiencing additional difficulties with the loss of its 737MAX fleet.

We can see it doesn’t stop. Today we see that Nordica, the national airline of Estonia, is in trouble. They fly from Tallinn to various destinations in Europe with 10 Bombardier CRJ-900s, 2 Bombardier CRJ-700s and 7 ATR72-600s. The company has already changed its network on a regular basis, but is now also stopping its ticket sales in October this year. According to the company, there is overcapacity in Estonia, which makes it unprofitable for them to fly. This does not mean, however, that the operation of the flights will stop. From the end of October, the Polish airline LOT Polish Airlines will be responsible for ticket sales. From then on, Nordica will be completely dependent on others. The airline already has experience with this. It already operates flights for third parties such as LOT and SAS.It is of course questionable if LOT can get Nordica back on its feet again. Of course the future will tell us.

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Robin Van Acker
Robin Van Acker
Photojournalist - An avid aviation photographer, Robin contributes to the Commercial Aviation section of the publication, with a focus on liveries, new aircraft deliveries and route development