SAS and Norwegian drive out US carriers

Nordic airlines to take market share from United, Delta
SAS, the biggest carrier flying between Scandinavia and the US, is continuing to grow its North Atlantic network, while Norwegian is also launching new routes to the US since it entered the market in 2013. The losers from this expansion are the US carriers United and Delta, CAPA reports.
As Norwegian adds to its fleet, its long-haul network is oriented towards the US with five destinations and eight routes. SAS operates eight routes between Scandinavia and the United States, with a daily frequency or more on all but one. Both airlines announced new routes to the US in 2016.
United and Delta, meanwhile, are scaling back their presence in the Nordic market. United recently said it would join Delta in serving the market on a seasonal summer basis only. SAS and Norwegian are becoming a near duopoly.
The Scandinavia-US market has more than doubled since 2012, a gain of more than 1.2 million bookings. But Delta has lost 19,000 bookings, a 36% drop compared to its 30% capacity cut. United’s bookings have fallen by 69,000, a 26% decrease despite stable capacity.
SAS is likely to attract more premium traffic on its transatlantic routes. But Norwegian will keep a price advantage, meaning SAS will need many economy passengers to fill its planes. For more analysis by CAPA, click here.


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