BerlinPopular long-distance coach service Flixbus will be pausing its operations in Germany, Austria and Switzerland from Tuesday, 3 November. Flixtrains will also be affected, said operator Flixmobility on Friday.

Co-founder and managaing director André Schwämmlein said demand was too low to justify continued operations and that they should be able to resume service by the Christmas holidays, if the situation allows.

On Friday morning it was still possible to book tickets in November on the Flixbus website. 

Flixbus spokesperson Franziska Schleicher told Berliner Zeitung: "We're working as fast as possible to update the network. Unfortunately, operationally and technically, it can take a while to make the changes."

Passengers whose bookings have been cancelled due to corona will be informed by SMS or e-mail, she added. They'll receive a voucher for a future trip.

"We ask our passengers to make sure that their contact details are current," Schleicher said. Passengers can do so at https://shop.flixbus.de/rebooking/login.

Last the spring, the company stopped operating temporarily due to corona measures during the first lockdown.

"In the summer, we were then able to serve about half of our network again. We are following demand very closely," Schwämmlein told Welt am Sonntag. By October, they were once again noticing "a restrained wanderlust," he said.

"At the moment we are at about 30 per cent capacity," he added, saying they decided to shut down completely in response to politicians' latest call on Germans to refrain from tourism and non-essential travel.