More than a thousand passengers flying with Icelandic budget air carrier WOW Air yesterday found themselves stranded when the airline suddenly cancelled all their flights and ceased operations. According to CNN, WOW didn’t bother to tell anybody what was happening, instead they simply posted a statement on its website. Passengers were given the runaround, at multiple airports, due to conflicting information. Flights were delayed for hours before eventually getting cancelled. It was bedlam on both side of the atlantic. Where’s Keanu Reeves when you need him?
CNN reports that WOW was in the middle of negotiations to get a loan to continue operations, which was denied.
The airline announced the closure in a statement posted to its website on Thursday. It advised passengers to book new flights on other airlines, and said some may be eligible for compensation.
Wow Air CEO Skúli Mogensen told Icelandic state broadcaster RUV that negotiations to save the airline went on until the early morning in Iceland.
“As is normal, people believed we would get the investment,” Mogensen told RUV. “We have been very transparent, but it didn’t happen.”
They do not fuck around in Iceland. Back during their 2008 banking crisis, instead of bailing out all their banks like we did, Iceland decided to just let that shit fail and see what happened. And it was not pretty. And that was their own banking system! I can’t imagine the withering look they gave WOW Air when they had their hand out.
Apparently, WOW was so bad at letting its passengers (and probably staff) know what was going on, people were learning that they’d be eating reindeer sausage again for breakfast via Twitter or Reddit.
Icelandic budget airline Wow Air has ceased operations, cancelling all flights, leaving people stranded in foreign countries. What would you do if your flight was cancelled because the airline just went out of business?? This is the statement they posted to their website. #WowAir pic.twitter.com/WYPrABu2SN
— Courtney Youssef (@CourtneyYoussef) March 28, 2019
It’s too bad Blossom wasn’t booked on a WOW flight or the world would have heard about it much sooner. Here’s the scene at various airports WOW Air USED to serve.
— blogTO (@blogTO) March 28, 2019
— travelgirlto (@travelgirlto) March 28, 2019
i am on the ww104 flight scheduled for 3/28 as well, just found out about this news. they didn’t even notify any of us directly, had to find out from twitter and reddit
— Jonathan B. Koo (@jonathanbkoo) March 28, 2019
Even today, if you go to the WOW website there’s just a tiny banner at the top saying they’ve ceased operations. But I did get a pop-up asking me to join the WOW club, which I politely declined with my cursor.
Look, I know Keanu can’t be everywhere at all times, but next time I need a $89 ticket to Reykjavik, I’m not taking any chances. I’m flying with Keanu on Whoa air.