Scandinavian Airlines System Denmark-Norway-Sweden, usually referred to just SAS or Scandinavian Airlines, is facing extreme difficulties this week.
There are possibly 900 SAS pilots going on strike this Wednesday (June 29, 2022) if there is no agreement reached in meditation. Also, some of the Scandinavian governments have agreed on a debt to equity swap and Denmark is also willing to inject fresh capital, while both Norway and Sweden have said clear no.
You can access SAS here.
Sweden and Norway have agreed to convert debt to equity, but have refused to provide more capital to the airline. Denmark is willing, however, to write off loans and inject fresh capital into the airline if outside shareholders are chipping in.
The airline’s goal is to raise roughly $1B in fresh cash and convert another $2B in existing debt to capital.
SAS pilot unions have also indicated that they would go on strike from this Wednesday if their mediation is not successful.
SAS has released the following rebooking guidelines:
REBOOKING FREE OF CHARGE DUE TO A POTENTIAL PILOT STRIKE
As a precaution SAS offers passengers booked on flights that will be impacted by a potential pilot strike the option of rebooking the ticket once, free of charge.
The offer is valid for SAS tickets on SAS operated flights:
- SAS Scandinavia
- SAS Link
- SAS Connect
- Wetlease partners – Air Baltic, CityJet, XFLY
If you bought your ticket via a Travel Agent or a Tour Operator, please contact them directly.
If you are traveling on a charter with a SAS flight that has flight number SK7000-SK7999, please contact your tour operator. You will find contact information in your travel documents.
You can change your reservation free of charge on My Bookings, when the following criteria’s are met:
- Flight is not canceled
- The departure date of your flight is between 26 June 2022-03 July 2022
- Your ticket is bought and issued on/before 23 June 2022
- You bought the ticket on SAS website, SAS App or via SAS Customer Service.
You can change to new travel dates up until 360 days in advance, from the date you make the change.
Your rebooking must be made to:
- Another SAS operated flight
- To the same destination as on the original ticket
- Same service class as on the original ticket must be available
Contact SAS Customer Service or your Travel agent for rebooking if you are travelling with:
- An infant
- Ordered a special meal
- Are travelling as an unaccompanied minor
- Have requested transportation of a wheelchair
- Travel with a pet
Please note that if you have a group reservation and would like to rebook, you must contact the Travel agent where you purchased the tickets.
SAS will not reimburse travelers for costs such as, but not limited to, accommodations, meals or surface or air transport related for voluntary rebookings.
A potential pilot strike doesn’t affect all departures, see the status of your flight here
More information regarding flight disruptions
SAS has been in a chronic state of financial difficulties for most of the 2010s and has previously been on the verge of bankruptcy.
Danish, Swedish, and Norwegian states have or have had ownership stakes in the airline, and all propped it up with loans during the pandemic, as did most other governments of their national airlines.
It is interesting to see if the governments of Norway and Sweden would eventually cave in and inject fresh capital if the other option would be for the flag carrier to collapse. Only Denmark has indicated that they are willing to go beyond debt to equity conversion.
Passengers scheduled to fly on SAS over the next few days should be alerted that their flight may not operate in case the strike begins, and finding alternative options could be a challenge.
These strikes are often called off at the very last minute when an agreement between parties has been reached.
It would be sad to see SAS collapse, but they should find a workable business model and ownership structure. Going continuously from one crisis to another is not a way to run a business.