The cost of leasing in aircraft to replace problems with the Boeing 787 Dreamliner hits profits at low cost carrier Norwegian in its third quarter.

Pre-tax profits were down to 604 MNOK, against 873 million in the same period last year.

The costs associated with wet-leasing replacement aircraft for the Dreamliner totalled 101 MNOK, significantly affecting the quarterly results, the carrier said.

This amount included the cost of wet-lease, extra fuel and costs for accommodation, food and drink for delayed passengers.

The warm summer weather in northern Europe has also resulted in a slower summer business than in previous years.

However, quarterly passenger carryings rose by 800,000 to 6 million with the Scandinavian carrier’s Gatwick base showing the strongest growth. Norwegian claims to accounts for 90% of the growth at the airport and is expanding further next year with three transatlantic routes and more European services.

Chief executive Bjørn Kjos said: “In this quarter, we clearly see the outline of the company’s growth strategy.

“We have a strong passenger growth in all markets and we have managed to maintain a high load factor.

“At the same time, our results this quarter are significantly affected by the additional costs associated with replacement aircraft for the Dreamliner.

“In addition, Northern European sun seekers chose to enjoy the warm summer at home instead of flying south.”