Updated 5 May: Reacting to the news of the closure of Norwegian’s bases in the Canaries, the hoteliers’ association Ashotel says the decision exposes the islands’ Achilles’ heel, and that it’s “very bad news” that weakens our connectivity. Ashotel says that it has been warning for months that the global pandemic would not only naturally and logically affect the mobility of tourists but also that it would affect the connectivity of the Islands with the outside world. Association president Jorge Marichal said that it was inevitable that the pandemic would take its toll on airlines after so many months of tourist closures, and that ideas and support were needed for initiatives to strengthen the connectivity of an archipelago whose economy is mainly driven by tourism.
Original post 3 May: Airline Norwegian has announced that 1,191 employees will be laid off in Spain, 85 % of the company’s total workforce. This would mean the cessation of long-haul operations from Barcelona and a significant reduction in short-haul routes, but more concerning perhaps for the Canaries is that Norwegian intends to leave three of its five short-haul bases in Spain inoperative and without crews … these are Barcelona, Gran Canaria and Tenerife Sur.