While sad news, the bankruptcy of Adria Airways does not come as a surprise. The company has been in financial difficulty for some time, and from Monday 23 September 2019 had already suspended all flights except for a couple of daily services between Ljubljana and Frankfurt. At the time, Adria Airways announced that the suspension was temporary.
Three days earlier, on 20 September, two of Adria’s Bombardier CRJ900 aircraft had been repossessed due to unpaid debts.
Adria Airways has a proud 58-year history as the national airline of Slovenia. The company had around 500 employees and a fleet of 20 aircraft.
The Adria Airways bankruptcy leaves Slovenia without a national airline and limited direct air connectivity. There are no other airlines based in Slovenia that operate scheduled international flights. However, Ljubljana Airport in Slovenia’s capital is served by 15 international airlines including LOT Polish Airlines, Turkish Airlines, Air France, Air Serbia and easyJet. In the absence of its Star Alliance partner Adria Airways, it is likely that Lufthansa could also commence its own flights from Frankfurt and Munich to Ljubljana.
Adria Airways used Lufthansa’s Miles&More frequent flyer program, which continues operating as normal. So, the frequent flyer miles of Adria customers should be safe and can still be used to fly on other Star Alliance airlines.
The impact on Star Alliance of the Adria Airways bankruptcy is not as great as the impact of LATAM Airlines leaving Oneworld on that alliance. Overall, Star Alliance maintains a strong presence in Europe.
Adria Airways is just the latest in an alarmingly long list of airlines to file for insolvency over recent weeks. Last week, Thomas Cook went out of business. XL Airways and Aigle Azur in France have also gone bust in recent weeks. It’s a difficult time to be a profitable airline in Europe.
Join the discussion on the Australian Frequent Flyer forum: who’s next to fold ?