Alitalia closes its doors on October 15
For those of us who have flown Alitalia countless times, whether traveling to Italy or elsewhere in Europe, it is the end of an (imperfect) era. The Italian carrier will close on October 15, 2021, after being Italy’s national carrier for 75 years.
As of August 25, Alitalia no longer sells flights after October 15. All Alitalia flights that were scheduled to fly after October 15 have been canceled.
The Italian state-owned airline, which is part of the SkyTeam alliance that includes Delta Air Lines, Air France and KLM, experienced long-standing financial problems and declared bankruptcy in May 2017. Add to that the global pandemic, which has Caused a devastating blow to the airline industry – countless flights around the world were stranded for months over the past year and demand for international travel has still not returned to pre-pandemic levels.
Those with Alitalia flights that were booked before August 24, 2021, for travel that takes place after October 15, will have the option of change the flight to a comparable flight—Flights within Italy can be exchanged for flights within Italy, and international bookings can be changed for international flights — as long as new flights occur before October 14 (both departing and on return). Passengers will have to pay the fare difference for a change of destination. Alternatively, those with flights after October 15th can request a full refund.
From October 15, the new public company Italia Trasporto Aereo (ITA) will take over as the Italian national carrier. The ITA has announced its intention to operate flights to New York from Milan and Rome, and to Tokyo, Boston and Miami from Rome. Destinations from Rome and Milan Linate Airport will include Paris, London, Amsterdam, Brussels, Frankfurt and Geneva.
Initially, the ITA plans to operate a fleet of 7 wide-body and 45 narrow-body aircraft and will add 26 more aircraft later this year. By the end of 2025, ITA aims to have a fleet of up to 105 aircraft.
Alitalia carried 21.3 million passengers in 2019, according to the CAPA Aviation Center. The carrier currently has some 10,000 employees. It is not known what will happen to these employees and if the new company will take some of them.
Alitalia also confirmed details on Twitter and said customers should expect further communication from the airline with details on how to rebook a flight or request a refund.
The airline has additional information for passengers with MilleMiglia award tickets booked for travel after October 15 available on their airline. website. It is not known, however, what will happen to unused miles after October 15.
Associated Press contributed reporting.
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