Icelandair Lays Off 88 Skip to content

Icelandair Lays Off 88

By Yelena

Keflavík airport Icelandair
Photo: Golli.

Icelandair laid of 88 employees yesterday, and the dismissals take effect tomorrow, October 1, RÚV reports. Most of the staff, or 68, are pilots. Over 180 have lost their jobs due to group layoffs this month. The Directorate of Labour’s preliminary figures show unemployment was as high as 10% in September.

As of tomorrow, Icelandair will have just 71 pilots on its roster. The layoffs came as a surprise to pilots, stated chairman of the Icelandic Airline Pilots Association Jón Þór Þorvaldsson. The company had just raised funding in a successful public stock offering, in which many of them participated. Jón pointed out that Icelandair will need to train pilots to fly the new Boeing MAX planes that it is expected to receive in the coming months. In his opinion, it would have been more constructive to use the coming period for training.

Unnur Sverrisdóttir of the Directorate of Labour stated six different companies resorted to group layoffs this month. “Five announcements came from the tourism industry. In total 155 who lost their jobs there. And then there is one group layoff in the construction industry.” All of the companies are based in the capital area or on the nearby Suðurnes peninsula, where Keflavík airport is located.

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