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Primera Air Abruptly Shuts Down, Other Airlines Offer to Help Stranded Passengers

A rising budget airline seems to have met its end. Primera Air, which recently expanded its routes to the U.S., announced that it’s suspending all operations as of October 2, 2018. Primera’s website promises “further updates,” but notes that it is no longer reachable by phone or email.

The vague Primera shutdown announcement stated that service is “suspended,” but seems to indicate that the closure is, in fact, permanent. The Independent reported that Primera passengers at London’s Stansted Airport were notified of the change, and that U.K. travelers would be stranded in the U.S. and E.U. following the airline’s abrupt shutdown. Stansted confirmed the announcement on Twitter:

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Other airlines including Delta, British Airways, and Norwegian have announced “repatriation” fares to help stranded passengers. Norwegian is offering tickets 50 percent off base economy fare and with lower taxes, though seats are subject to availability. Norwegian’s offer specifically covers any U.S. or Canadian travelers stranded in Europe by the line’s failure, along with many routes for Europeans stranded in North America or Europe. Affected travelers should contact Norwegian for bookings; proof of a Primera ticket is required.

[st_content_ad]Anyone holding tickets for future Primera flights should also contact their credit card issuer for a refund.

The 15-year-old airline is the first of the new low-fare transatlantic lines to go under, but it may not be the last. The improved capabilities of the latest A321 and B737 models have encouraged a handful of airlines to try the transatlantic low-fare market for the first time, and the chances are that not all will succeed.

This development will also likely have a chilling effect on the various wannabe lines looking at the transatlantic marketplace.

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By Ed Perkins

A nationally recognized reporter, writer, and consumer advocate, Ed Perkins focuses on how travelers can find the best deals and avoid scams.

He is the author of "Online Travel" (2000) and "Business Travel: When It's Your Money" (2004), the first step-by-step guide specifically written for small business and self-employed professional travelers. He was also the co-author of the annual "Best Travel Deals" series from Consumers Union.

Perkins' advice for business travelers is featured on MyBusinessTravel.com, a website devoted to helping small business and self-employed professional travelers find the best value for their travel dollars.

Perkins was founding editor of Consumer Reports Travel Letter, one of the country's most influential travel publications, from which he retired in 1998. He has also written for Business Traveller magazine (London).

Perkins' travel expertise has led to frequent television appearances, including ABC's "Good Morning America" and "This Week with David Brinkley," "The CBS Evening News with Dan Rather," CNN, and numerous local TV and radio stations.

Before editing Consumer Reports Travel Letter, Perkins spent 25 years in travel research and consulting with assignments ranging from national tourism development strategies to the design of computer-based tourism models.

Born in Evanston, Illinois, Perkins lives in Ashland, Oregon with his wife.

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