Norse Atlantic Airways (N0, Oslo Gardermoen) will not be operating its fleet at its fullest until the start of the 2025 summer season at the earliest, having agreed to extend subleases for four of its Boeing widebody jets.

Three B787-8s have been extended by up to one year from the original return date and will now be redelivered to Norse Atlantic Airways sometime between the end of March and the end of May 2025, the transatlantic specialist explained in a statement on February 12.

The fourth, a B787-9, will be extended by two months before returning to Norse in early May 2024, ahead this year’s summer peak.

“The agreement will increase total cash profit during the extended sublease periods,” it said.

Norse Atlantic Airways dry-leases fifteen B787s but deploys only ten on its network, the ch-aviation fleets module shows: four B787-9s under its Norwegian AOC (with one more to be delivered) and six of the same type under its Norse Atlantic (United Kingdom) (Z0, London Gatwick) AOC. Two more B787-9s and all three of its B787-8s, all leased from AerCap, are currently subleased to Air Europa (UX, Palma de Mallorca) in a deal effective from mid-2022.

CEO Bjørn Tore Larsen told ch-aviation in an interview in March 2023 that the sublease deal has allowed it to match capacity to recovering demand and avoid expanding too quickly. However, he also said that Norse would operate all 15 aircraft itself in 2024.

Norse Atlantic did not name Air Europa in its recent statement. But it clarified that all 15 of its aircraft “are on long-term flexible lease terms agreed during 2021 when lease rates were at historical low prices. The low lease pricing is fixed for the full duration of the leases, with no inflationary adjustments.” Larsen additionally commented that “our strategy is to grow at a steady pace in line with market demand, [...] and we look forward to building up to a fully operational fleet of 15 aircraft in 2025.”