By The Independent, UK
Although the aviation industry is growing, there are always businesses that fall by the wayside. In 2019 alone, 23 carriers have stopped flying, making it a record breaking year for airline bankruptcies.
Thomas Cook’s demise was one of 2019’s most shocking failures, but plenty of smaller brands have also gone under, including Flybmi and WOW Air.
Increased competitiveness, cost pressures, Brexit uncertainty and high fuel prices are the most common causes of airline bankruptcy according IBA Consulting.
Flight compensation company GIVT has compiled a list of all the airlines that have been grounded. These are the carriers that have ceased flying (so far):
Little known outside Germany, Germania, officially known as ‘Germania Fluggesellschaft mbH’, was a well-established, privately owned German airline based in Berlin that flew to more than 40 destinations. It declared bankruptcy on 4 February 2019, and ceased operations on 5 February 2019.
This small regional US airline barely got off the ground. On November 1, 2018 it launched its first flight – but it barely lasted two months, officially ceasing operations on 17 January 2019.
Flybmi, based at East Midlands airport, flew from regional UK airports (Aberdeen, Bristol, East Midlands and Newcastle) to Continental and Scandinavian destinations including Brussels, Dusseldorf, Frankfurt, Hamburg, Munich, Oslo, Paris and Stavanger. It went into administration on 16 February.
Insel Air served as the national airline of Curaçao, flying to five destinations across the Caribbean and South America. The Dutch Caribbean airline ceased all operations on 16 February 2019.
Asian Express Airline
Asian Express Airline was a Tajikistani carrier based in Dushanbe, operating domestic and international flights (although, as of 2016, all international routes were to and from Russia. It was permanently grounded in January 2019.
A more familiar name than some of the other entries, WOW was an Icelandic low-cost carrier founded in 2011 that flew to destinations in Europe, North America and Asia. It stopped trading on 28 March this year.
Aerolíneas de Antioquía
At its peak, Colombian regional airline Aerolínea de Antioquia operated scheduled domestic services from Medellín to more than 20 destinations. It officially failed on 29 March 2019.
Fly Jamaica Airways
This one-aircraft operation flew from Jamaica to Guyana, Georgetown; New York in the US; and Toronto, Canada. It ceased operation on 31 March 2019.
Air Philip was a South Korean airline operating domestic and international routes. It was founded in 2016, but had ceased operation as of 13 March 2019.
This sizable Indian airline was struggling for a few years before being grounded on 17 April this year – a move which it said was “temporary”. The company is currently undergoing insolvency proceedings.
Brazilian carrier Avianca Brasil, a subsidiary of Colombian airline group Avianca, never officially announced its bankruptcy, but stopped trading on 24 June.
The Argentinian subsidiary of the Colombian group also didn’t make it through the year. It ceased operating on 7 June.
Al Naser Wings Airlines
This was a small Iraqi airline based in Baghdad, with scheduled domestic services to Middle Eastern destinations, the most frequent being to Damascus in Syria. It shut up shop for good on 16 April.
Aigle Azur was a French airline based out of Paris Orly Airport and flying to 21 destinations across Europe, Africa and the Middle East. All flights were cancelled from 7 September and the company ceased all business activities on 27 September.