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Published on Thursday, October 18, 2018

Low-cost airline suspends operations

Low-cost airline Cobalt has suspended operations, cancelling all flights from just before midnight last night.

The Cypriot airline told passengers not to go to Larnaca Airport or any departure airport today because no Cobalt flights will operate and no Cobalt staff will be present.

"We sincerely apologise once again and would like to thank our very loyal customers for their support over the last two years of Cobalt operations," it said.

Cobalt, which employed 200 staff, operated flights from Cyprus to 23 airports, including Heathrow, Stansted, Gatwick and Manchester.

It had recently added a business class and frequent flyer programme.

According to local media, it has failed to reach a deal with a potential new backer.

The Cypriot Government said it would help affected travellers get back home but would only pay for return tickets for those due to travel on October 17 and 18.

The UK Civil Aviation Authority told passengers they would have to arrange the flight themselves and keep receipts.

An announcement for passengers due to fly after today will be made in due course.

Cobalt is not covered by the ATOL protection scheme.

The news comes after the collapse of Danish budget carrier Primera Air earlier this month.

At last week's ABTA Convention in Seville, easyJet CEO Johan Lundgren warned there would be more failures in the airline sector, particularly with rising fuel prices.


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