Icelandair Will Buy Wow Air For $18 Million

Oliver Holzbauer [CC BY-SA 2.0], from flickr
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Icelandair has agreed to buy Wow Air, its chief competitor, for $18 million.

Icelandair has been under intense pressure from Wow, an ultra low-cost carrier. With the purchase it will be able to get rid of a thorn in its side at a rock bottom price.

Icelandair promises to keep operating both brands, though airlines often make promises that they won’t keep in order to gain regulatory approval for a merger. We’ll see if they actually keep Wow around long-term or if they merge its operations into Icelandair.

Wow has struggled of late, cutting service to Cincinnati, Cleveland, Dallas, JFK, and S. Louis. They also changed Tel Aviv from a year-round destination to a summer only destination. It’s no surprise that the sale price is so small given their troubles.

Earlier this year, Wow got in hot water for advertising food from Tel Aviv as being under OK Kosher Supervision when in fact it was not.

Mergers are normally bad for consumers, but in this case it might just keep both airlines alive. Hopefully Icelandair will take over some of Wow’s cancelled destinations and start serving Tel Aviv year-round in the future, a route that can always use more low-cost competition.

What are your predictions for this merger?

HT: theyankel, via DDF

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24 Comments On "Icelandair Will Buy Wow Air For $18 Million"

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yehuda flohr

18 million?


Dosnt one plane cost 18 million


One A321 cost 114 Million dollar, so i’m sure there’s a big mistake on this post


18 mil? I assume they don’t own their own planes..


18M ? Is that a typo?


Wow is only worth $18M? Whats Spirit worth? $0.21?

Michael b.

with a Fleet size of 20 leased planes and 1,100 Employees makes sense 18 million.


Speaking of Icelandair…flying them next week for the first time on an ecoonmy light fare. Who knew trying to find a reasonably priced 21x15x7 carry-on would be so difficult?! Does anyone know if they are really strict with this? I have an international 21” Maxlite 4 bag but I’m concerned it won’t fit in a metal ‘measurement’ box. I refuse to pay $171 rt for a checked bag. 😉
Any advice?


I always use expandable cloth bags with wheels that expand to 32″ from the size of a magazine, you can get them at Walmart for $18, I even put an extra one in a knapsack which they usually ignore anyway when you board


Thank you!


I have flown them from EWR several times, they were not so strict about size but were very strict about weight, even for the carry-on.


That’s because it’s easier for them to collect money, whereas size restriction is something that people argue about.

Luggage debacles

They were super strict out of JFK when I flew with them this summer. Even if the bag fit but the wheel kept it from sliding all the way into their measuring device they said “no”.




googbye wow