Flybe ‘set to collapse within hours’ – British airline ‘to cease operating’ by tomorrow

Crisis talks were held throughout the day on Wednesday to try to secure a rescue package, but it is understood no deal has been agreed. The struggling airline was saved from collapse earlier this year but has been unable to obtain finance from the Government.


  • FlyBe news: Has FlyBe gone bust? Are flights cancelled?

ITV News Business and Economics Editor Joel Hills, wrote on Twitter: “I’m told that Flybe is waiting for the last scheduled flight to land tonight before putting the business into administration.

“The airline is expected to then cease operating. A formal announcement is likely to be made in the early hours of tomorrow morning.”

Flybe declined to comment at this stage, when contacted by

Earlier this evening, Flybe issued a statement, after passengers reported travel disruption at a UK airport, with flights being cancelled.

It came after journalist Peter A Smith posted a video at the airport on Twitter, having been waiting to board a Flybe flight at Glasgow airport.

He wrote on Twitter: “Has FlyBe just ceased operating in front of my eyes? Waiting to board a FlyBe flight to Birmingham and all of their flights have just been cancelled. Advice from staff is FlyBe “definitely will not be flying out tomorrow either.”

A spokesperson said: “Flybe can confirm that, following a miscommunication regarding re-fuelling this evening, two flights were delayed and that due to the crew now being out of hours, have been cancelled.

“Normal operations have now resumed.

“We sincerely apologise to those passengers inconvenienced by the disruption to their travel plans.”

Mike Clancy, general secretary of the Prospect union, said it would be a “devastating blow” for its members working for Flybe if it goes into administration.

He said: “The airline provides important connections to and from parts of the UK where other viable options often don’t exist.

“A number of regional airports are also highly reliant on Flybe for most or all of their scheduled services.

“Prospect will do everything we can to support our members but the truth is the Government has badly let them down.

“The failure to provide the loan that is required as part of a package of rescue measures means the Government has failed in its commitment to every part of the UK.”

Flybe requested a £100million loan from the UK government last month, in its bid for survival.


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However, the state loan is now set to be rejected, it was reported today, with the carrier’s management clinging to hope of a cut to air passenger duty in the Budget next week, the Finacial Times reported.

Two months ago, the UK government announced a package of measures to help rescue Flybe, with the potential loan set to be part of this.

However, the carrier’s request has not met certain criteria set by the government, according to Whitehall officials.

The Exeter-based airline’s final airborne flights are expected to land at airports in the UK late on Wednesday evening, the BBC reports.

While financial problems were already apparent, a company insider told the BBC the impact of the coronavirus outbreak on the travel industry has “made a bad situation much worse”.

Nigel Frith, a senior market analyst at, tonight commented: “After narrowly avoiding collapse in January, rumours are rife that Flybe won’t last the evening.

“The downturn in bookings from the coronavirus outbreak looks to be the final nail in the coffin for the budget airline.

“The timing couldn’t have been worse for Flybe as it waited for the Government to commit to a £100 million loan.

“The collapse will be a blow for Boris Johnson and his plan to improve communications in a post Brexit Britain.

“However, with coronavirus just ramping up in the UK, Flybe could be the first of many businesses which struggle to pull through the expected demand shock over the coming weeks or possibly months as coronavirus spreads.”

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