Norwegian Air has axed more than 20 transatlantic flights in the face of a slump in demand due to coronavirus concerns.

A total of 22 flights have been cancelled between Europe and the US between March 28 and May 5.

Norwegian has a “limited number” of flights to northern Italy and other regions heavily affected by the virus.

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The budget carrier had already cut capacity by up to 15% so far this year.

Norwegian has suffered reduced demand on some routes in the past few days, particularly on future bookings.

Bookings for flights departing in the coming weeks are less affected, according to the carrier.

The bulk of the cuts are on routes from Rome to Boston, New York and Los Angeles.

However, Gatwick to New York frequency is being reduced from three to two daily departures on some days.

Norwegian said: “Given the uncertainty and ongoing impact on overall demand for air travel, Norwegian withdraws its 2020 guidance provided to the market on February 13, 2020.

“At this stage, it is too early to assess the full impact on our business.”

The airline carried almost 2 million passengers in February.

Chief executive Jacob Schram said: “I am pleased that we continue to deliver on the strategy of returning to profitability following several years of significant growth.

“This is the 11th consecutive month that the planned capacity reduction has impacted the unit revenue positively. I am also pleased that our on-time performance continues to improve as I know how important punctuality is for our customers.

“However, we are currently experiencing reduced demand on some routes due to the coronavirus and have therefore cancelled some flights between Europe and the US.”

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