LONDON – Norwegian has confirmed a temporary Ireland summer operation schedule for March 31 to April 10 following the worldwide grounding of the Boeing 737MAX.
The carrier said in a statement that it “has worked continuously since the grounding of the Boeing 737 MAX to ensure that customers travel plans can continue with minimal disruption.”
“The airline has re-routed customers and offered passengers the chance to rebook or receive a full refund free of charge if they no longer wish to travel. The airline is also combining flights and reallocating aircraft within its own network to keep cancellations to a minimum and minimize inconvenience for its customers”.
This disruption has affected services across Ireland, especially to the main airports of operation such as Shannon, Cork and Dublin.
Those flying between New York (Stewart) and Providence to Shannon have been accommodated onto flight D8 1762 which will fly to Dublin instead, but using a Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner instead.
Customers flying on the opposite route (Shannon-New York (Stewart) and Providence) will be transferred onto D8 1763, again operating the 787-9 Dreamliner.
Providence services to Cork under DI 1820 have been re-accommodated onto flight DI 1822 which will head to Dublin instead using its ETOPS-approved Boeing 737-800 aircraft.
The opposite route (Cork-Providence) under flight DI 1821 has been transferred to Dublin again, under DI 1823, using the same aircraft type.
The carrier did confirm that its new service between Dublin and Toronto’s Hamilton will operate as normal, using the 737-800 also four times per week.
It did concede however that it is continuing to “temporarily withhold further sales of all routes operated by the 737 MAX to ensure the airline can meet customer expectations in light of the suspended operations of this aircraft.”
For Irish operations, this remains clear that the grounding of the 737MAX has resulted in the consolidation of routes strictly to Ireland during the Summer season.
Norwegian are remaining confident in this case that the MAX should be back in service for or after the Summer season, but this is depending on regulatory approval.
It will be interesting to see what further levels of disruption can be anticipated and whether Norwegian may cancel its MAX orders.