Virgin Australia to Cut Capacity by 25 Percent as COVID-19 Cases Rise

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Grounded Virgin planes are seen parked on a tarmac at Brisbane Airport in Brisbane, Australia, on April 21, 2020. (Jono Searle/Getty Images)

SYDNEY—Virgin Australia said on Monday it would reduce capacity across its network by around 25 percent for the rest of January and for February due to reduced travel demand and staff being required to isolate as COVID-19 case numbers rise in Australia.

The airline, which competes against Qantas Airways Ltd, said it would cut some flight frequencies and suspend 10 routes temporarily.

Virgin Australia Chief Executive Jayne Hrdlicka said the surge in COVID-19 cases had affected customer confidence.

“Virgin Australia remains focused on growing its network and consumer reach and will resume services as soon travel demand improves,” she said in a statement.

The airline said in November it would add seven more Boeing Co 737 NG planes to its fleet, nearly restoring it to pre-pandemic levels, to help meet a goal of obtaining a one-third share of Australia’s domestic travel market.

Reuters

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