Color Air AS was the first Norwegian low-cost airline. It operated from Oslo Airport, Gardermoen in 1998 and 1999 with a fleet of three Boeing 737-300 aircraft. Color Air was a brand extension of Color Line, which shared a common owner in the Olav Nils Sunde-controlled Color Group. The airline operated five daily round trips from Oslo to Trondheim and Bergen, four to Ålesund and one to London, in addition to a weekly trip to Alicante. Color Air pioneered the low-cost business model in Norway, with a denser seating, no frills and lack of a frequent flyer program. Tickets were sold only via the Internet, by telephone or in supermarkets; when bought from travel agents, there was a NOK 200 surcharge.
The airline was established in response to the opening of Gardermoen, which would allow any airline sufficient landing slots to compete with the incumbents Braathens and Scandinavian Airlines (SAS). Color Air commenced operations on 1 August 1998, with the two other airlines moving from Oslo Airport, Fornebu on 8 October. Following the airline's establishment, a price war broke out between it and the two incumbents. All three increased capacity and dropped prices, giving a 40% increase in seats on the dominant domestic routes and seat loads of between 30 and 50 percent. After thirteen months and NOK 400 million in losses, Color Air gave up and filed for bankruptcy. The price war cost the three airlines more than NOK 3 billion, and ultimately forced the other two to merge.
... On 27 September 1999, Color Air terminated all flights and ceased operations ... difficult to convince corporate travelers to switch to Color Air. 220 employees lost their jobs, while Color Group estimated it lost NOK 400 million on the airline ...
... Color Air was established as a domestic low-cost airline by Olav Nils Sunde in January 1998 ... Color Air started with flights from Gardermoen on 1 August ... Color Air terminated all flights and ceased operations on 27 September 1999 ...
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