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One big low-cost, low-fun airline: British Airways just bought a stake in Norwegian

One big low-cost, low-fun airline: British Airways just bought a stake in Norwegian
[Photos: bilaleldaou/Pixabay; Flickr user Mark Harkin]

When two great things get together, you get Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. When two mediocre things get together, you get today’s news that IAG SA, the parent company of British Airways, has purchased a 4.61% stake in low-cost airline Norwegian. According to Bloomberg, now that it has sampled the wares, it may make an offer to take an ownership stake in the company.

For British Airways, such a move could mean eliminating Norwegian, a competitor that has really shaken up the industry by offering bargain-basement prices for trans-Atlantic flights. For Norwegian, it could mean shoring up its reportedly shaky finances and high debt load.

As for passengers, well, it would just mean a bigger bet on low-cost, no-frills options. While both airlines are fine for getting from one place to another–and there is definitely demand for that in the market–customers who believe that their vacation starts when they get on the plane are not likely to be impressed. Call us crazy for getting annoyed when we’re asked to pay for a blanket on a seven-hour flight to Oslo, or when we have our flight moved from one airport to another six hours before take-off.

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