Iceland’s Purple Planes Are Grounded, and With Them, Its Economy

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In retrospect, it was probably not a fantastic idea to leave Iceland’s economic fortunes tethered to an airline called WOW. Before it collapsed in March, WOW Air delivered more than one-fourth of all international visitors to this ruggedly spectacular island nation. Its credulity-straining fares — $199 round trip from New York and San Francisco — were key elements of a tourism bonanza that lifted Iceland from its catastrophic 2008 financial crisis, the International New York Times reported. Now, five months after WOW’s purple jets ceased flying, Iceland is suffering a pronounced drop in tourists that threatens to push the country into recession. The downturn completes a cycle not unfamiliar to the 350,000 people who live on this boom-and-bust-prone island. Read more