March 20, 2020 / 4:57 PM / 4 months ago

easyJet says will ground most of its fleet from Tuesday

FILE PHOTO: An easyJet Airbus A320-251NEO plane lands during the inauguration of the new easyJet base at the Nantes-Atlantique airport in Bouguenais near Nantes, France, April 4, 2019. REUTERS/Stephane Mahe

LONDON (Reuters) - British low-cost airline easyJet (EZJ.L) said it would ground most of its aircraft from Tuesday in response to travel restrictions aimed to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

The airline said it would run repatriation flights for customers over the weekend that it expected would end by Monday, and thereafter would still operate a minimal schedule of essential services on some routes.

“We know how important it is for customers to get home and so are continuing to operate rescue flights over the coming days to repatriate them,” said chief executive Johan Lundgren.

“Significantly reducing our flying program is the right thing to do when many countries have issued advice to their citizens not to travel unless it is essential, and the aircraft groundings will also remove significant levels of variable costs at a time when this remains crucial.”

Reporting by Alistair Smout; editing by Stephen Addison

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