Scandinavian Airlines (SAS) has announced they are suspending most of its operations as of March 16th, 2020, due to the on-going Coronavirus pandemic. Currently the airline is unable to provide a specific date for when it will resume the operations. This announcement follows after Denmark, Norway, and Sweden are all closing their borders this coming week to most foreign visitors.
The suspension of the majority of its flights follows an announcement that SAS will have to temporarily lay-off 90% of its employees; up to 10,000 staff in total, according to Reuters.
SAS has taken a different approach than the other airlines cancelling their flights recently; they are acknowledging that the demand is virtually non-existent, saying they will shut down until the demand is there again – instead of providing a period of 1-2 weeks, which likely could have been pushed back.
The official announcement from SAS can be found below:
Due to the coronavirus and the measures implemented by national authorities, the demand for air travel is essentially non-existent. SAS has therefore decided to put most of its operations on hold, starting Monday March 16 and until necessary prerequisites for commercial air traffic returns.
To support our customers, we will in the next few days do our utmost to uphold a certain level of operation to enable travelers to return from their destinations.
Information regarding the traffic situation and specific flights will be constantly updated on our website. Affected passengers will be notified.
The waiting time at our call centers is extraordinary long. We kindly ask that you only call us if your flight departs within the next 3 days.