The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) has granted approval to Norwegian Air Shuttle to being flights services on new routes between the United States and Europe. The approval has come after three years of raging controversy. However, some lawmakers and labor unions have protested the DOT decision and said that they would contest it. The preliminary approval was granted to the discount carrier in April last year.
A spokesman of Norwegian said, “The approval granted to Norwegian Air Shuttle by the U.S. Department of Transportation was long overdue. The permission would now enable the airline to launch flights from Cork to various U.S. destinations. The company had been eagerly looking forward to this.”
Media reports said that Norwegian Air Shuttle would be using smaller aircrafts to operate flights on U.S. routes from Cork. Other transatlantic carriers are however making use of bigger aircrafts. Norwegian Air Shuttle is planning to deploy new Boeing 737 Max aircrafts to serve some of the new routes. The airline will also be offering cheap airfares for travel to the United States.
According to the reports, Norwegian Air Shuttle says it isn’t sure how travelers would respond to its switching over to the one-aisle smaller aircrafts on U.S. routes. The airline though hopes that this would be welcomed and travelers would respond favorable to this, particularly to the lower fares. The airline has also promised increased competition on the routes between the U.S. and Europe.
Travel experts said that the U.S. Department of Transportation approval to Norwegian Air Shuttle is in fact a blessing in disguise and a win-win situation for millions of passengers. This would undoubtedly result in lower fares and increased travel options. With the DOT permission, the airline would also aggressively work on its plans for further expanding its network in the United States and benefit in the long term.