XL Airways France suspends ticket sales

XL Airways' Airbus A330-300. Photo: © Anna Zvereva

French long-haul carrier XL Airways France has announced that it is suspending ticket sales due to financial difficulties.

The airline says this decision takes immediate effect. It continues to state, that “some of [XL Airways’] flights may have to be cancelled” and advises passengers to monitor their flight status.

Meanwhile, French media Tour Hebdo reports that the struggling carrier would enter receivership on Friday.

This comes only two weeks after another French airline, Aigle Azur, ceased operations following financial difficulties and internal disputes.

XL Airways France was founded in 1995 (branded as ‘Star Airlines’ until 2006) and currently operates an all-widebody fleet, consisting of three Airbus A330-200 and one A330-300. A fourth A330-200 is leased from Portuguese charter airline Hi Fly. It offers flights from Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport to destinations mostly in the United States and the Caribbean, along with long-haul domestic flights to Reunion in the Indian Ocean.

In 2016, with transactions completed in September 2018, XL Airways France merged with La Compagnie, an all-business class airline which operates flights from Paris Orly and Nice to New York Newark. At the moment, it is unclear if and how La Compagnie would be affected by a potential shutdown of XL Airways. The two airlines are separate companies but share the same holding.