Reduced seat-mile costs resulting from the fuel efficiency of new-generation airliners such as the Boeing 787 will enable low-cost carriers to provide successful long-haul services.
Speaking at the World Low Cost Airlines Congress in London, Bjørn Kjos, chief executive of Norwegian, predicts that long-haul travel "will [follow] the same pattern you have seen with short-haul traffic. The reason it will take-off is the [Boeing] 787 and [Airbus] A350, which mean you can start long-haul on a low-cost basis".
With the first of Norwegian's eight ordered 787s due for delivery in 2013, Kjos says the airline's short-term strategy involves "building up to long-haul".
He says that some of the 787s may be based outside of Norway in locations such as Bangkok, which helps lower costs when running a "low-cost airline out of a high-cost country".