Virgin Australia shares remained steady despite the airline earlier announcing it was to cut all international flights and domestic capacity by 50 per cent.
Shares closed out the day trading at $0.067, incredibly rising 6 per cent from yesterday’s close of $0.063.
Meanwhile, Qantas finished down 11 per cent, on $2.53, after a day in which Prime Minister Scott Morrison advised Australians not to leave the country.
Virgin Group’s cuts, which include the main carrier and Tigerair, amount to the equivalent of grounding 53 aircraft. More details on exactly which flights and routes will be axed are to be published over the next week.
The business has maintained it will try to avoid additional redundancies by fast-tracking staff taking accrued and unpaid leave. It also announced additional options for passengers who want to change their travel plans in light of COVID-19.
Chief executive Paul Scurrah said, “We have responded by making tough decisions, which include reducing our domestic capacity and phasing in the temporary suspension of international flying for a period of two and a half months.”
Shortly after Virgin made the announcement, Prime Minister Morrison announced he was advising all Australians not to leave the country, raising the travel ban to an unprecedented level four.
He said, “That is the first time that has ever happened in Australia’s history.
“The travel advice to every Australian is ‘Do not travel abroad. Do not go overseas.’
“That is a very clear instruction. For those who are thinking of going overseas in the school holidays, don’t. Don’t go overseas.”