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Thursday 26 August 2021

Alitalia grounded for good


Once regarded as one of the world's leading airlines, troubled Italian flag carrier Alitalia will go out of business on October 15.

After decades of financial woes, the airline this week ceased selling tickets for after that date after 75 years in the aviation business.

The government-owned Italia Transporto Aereo, or ITA, will become Italy’s new national carrier.

All Alitalia flights that had been scheduled to fly after October 15 have been cancelled.

The Italian state-owned airline - part of the SkyTeam alliance that includes Delta Air Lines, Air France, and KLM- declared bankruptcy in May 2017. It is known or being the airline that usually flies the Pope on charter flights around the world. 

The global Covid-19 pandemic dealt a final blow to the ailing airline.

Those with ticket booked for after October 15 will be able to change them to a comparable flight, or get a refund.

The new, Italian Government-owned Italia Transporto Aereo (ITA) plans to operate flights to New York from Milan and Rome, and to Tokyo, Boston, and Miami from Rome. 

Other Destinations from Rome and Milan’s Linate airport will include Paris, London, Amsterdam, Brussels, Frankfurt, and Geneva.

ITA plans to operate a fleet of seven wide-body and 45 narrow-body aircraft and will add 26 more planes later this year. 

Alitalia carried 21.3 million passengers in 2019 and currently has 10,000 employees. It is unclear what will happen to those employees or whether the new company will take on some of them. 

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