Flybmi collapse fuelled by 'Brexit challenges'

19 February 2019 08:22

Flybmi operated routes to 25 European cities

Flybmi operated routes to 25 European cities

Hundreds of passengers have had their travel plans cancelled following the collapse of airline flybmi.

An estimated 1,500 travellers had been due to fly with the carrier on Sunday, a day after it announced it had ceased operations.

British Midland Regional Limited, which operated as flybmi, blamed difficulties around increases in fuel and carbon costs, and challenges "particularly those created by Brexit".

The news, which came as many schools across the country broke up for half-term holidays, saw hundreds of passengers face travel disruption.

Announcement

The East Midlands-based airline had operated flights on routes to 25 European cities, including Aberdeen, Bristol, City of Derry, East Midlands, London Stansted and Newcastle.

It was claimed some passengers were still about to make bookings on Saturday, just hours before the airline made its announcement about the collapse.

A tweet from the airline a day earlier invited people to book a trip with flybmi to Munich for winter sports.

A statement on the flybmi website said: "The airline has faced several difficulties, including recent spikes in fuel and carbon costs, the latter arising from the EU's recent decision to exclude UK airlines from full participation in the Emissions Trading Scheme.

"These issues have undermined efforts to move the airline into profit.

"Current trading and future prospects have also been seriously affected by the uncertainty created by the Brexit process, which has led to our inability to secure valuable flying contracts in Europe and lack of confidence around bmi's ability to continue flying between destinations in Europe.

"Additionally, our situation mirrors wider difficulties in the regional airline industry which have been well documented.

"We sincerely regret that this course of action has become the only option open to us, but the challenges, particularly those created by Brexit, have proven to be insurmountable."

Collapse

Flybmi is the latest of several airlines to collapse in recent years as firms complain about rising fuel costs and concerns about Brexit.

In October 2017, Monarch became the biggest ever British airline to suffer a collapse when it went into administration.

Customers have been advised to contact their payment card issuer to get a refund for flights, while those who have booked through a travel agent or partner airlines are advised to contact their agent or airline for details of their options.

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