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Blow as Loganair flights 'suspended' between Inverness and Shetland until Christmas, due to reduced demand

By Louise Glen

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Jonathan Hinkles, Loganair’s managing director.
Jonathan Hinkles, Loganair’s managing director.

Commercial air operator Loganair has suspended flights between Inverness and Shetland due to reduced levels of demand due to the Covid–19 pandemic.

The air operator said it would fly a limited schedule at Christmas and New Year, but the service would not fully resume until late March.

Customers with tickets for flights have been contacted by Loganair, to rebook or obtain a refund.

Loganair chief executive Jonathan Hinkles said: “Changing flights and suspending routes is a step we do not take lightly, but where travel demand remains at less than half of last year’s levels due to the pandemic, we simply cannot fly near-empty aeroplanes to maintain a full schedule.

"Unlike other forms of public transport, Loganair’s services are operated on a commercial basis – if we carry no passengers, we receive no income.

"To safeguard the future of the remaining services, we have had to take action to adjust our schedule for the coming winter and plan to maintain our schedule from Sumburgh to Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Kirkwall.”

A Loganair spokeswoman said: "We have made further changes to our schedule as a result of the continued reduced levels demand for air services through the Covid-19 pandemic and as we approach the traditionally-quieter winter season.

"The airline has taken the decision to suspend services from Shetland to Inverness and Glasgow, although a limited schedule of Glasgow flights will be retained over the Christmas and New Year period in anticipation of demand.

"Services on both routes will then resume as part of Loganair’s Summer 2021 timetable from late March."

She added: "Connections between Shetland and Orkney will be maintained by the combined Edinburgh flights serving both Sumburgh and Kirkwall, keeping a daily connection between the islands open.

"Customers with bookings on flights affected by the changes have been notified by Loganair within the last 24 hours and have received an e-mail setting out options to rebook or obtain a refund where their flights have been cancelled.

"All customers can log-in to the Manage my Booking function on Loganair’s website at any time to check the status of their flights if they wish."

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