New routes launched during the last week:
Route of the week
|Celebrating the arrival of Etihad’s inaugural flight to Minsk, Geert Boven, Etihad’s executive vice president sales and services, and captain Tony Rose take part in a traditional Belarusian bread and salt welcome ceremony.|
- Etihad has found a destination that neither Emirates nor Qatar Airways has yet ‘discovered’ by starting twice-weekly flights to Minsk (MSQ), the capital of Belarus, from its Abu Dhabi (AUH) base. It will operate A319s with 104 seats. The largest carrier at Minsk is Belavia, which flies to 27 international destinations and carries around two-thirds of all scheduled passengers from the airport. The next busiest carrier at Minsk is Austrian, which operates twice daily to Vienna. The airport handled around 830,000 passengers last year, though the impressive terminal facility has been designed to accommodate almost six million.
|Bahrain Air’s Managing Director is celebrating again. The new route to Jeddah follows February’s cake cutting ceremony to mark the launch of the Bahrain – Dubai service.|
Cake of the week
- Bahrain Air recently began serving Jeddah (JED) from its base in Bahrain (BAH). Flights operate thrice-weekly using A320s and compete directly with Gulf Air (10 weekly flights) and Saudi Arabian Airlines (three weekly flights). A fourth weekly flight will operate from September to cater for Ramadan Umrah traffic. Jeddah becomes the airline’s 10th destination since it started flying in early February, with Dhaka and Kuwait due to be added in October.
|All smiles – Mayor of Derry Gerard Diver shakes hands at the inaugural flight with Aer Arann Captain Catriona Murphy, crew and Commercial Director Fergal Barry.|
- Aer Arann recently started a new service between Dublin (DUB) and the City of Derry (LDY). Flights on this 190 kilometre route operate twice daily using one of the airline’s 50-seat ATR42s. This route, along with several others in Ireland, is subsidised by the Government and operated as a Public Service Obligation (PSO) route. For the last three years the route had been operated by British Airways’ Scottish partner Loganair.
- Ryanair added a new connection between its base at Milan Bergamo (BGY) and Berlin Schönefeld (SXF). This replaces the service from Milan Bergamo to Arad in Romania, which the airline has dropped after a dispute with local authorities. This now becomes Ryanair’s seventh service to Berlin SXF which it first started serving from London Stansted as long ago as May 2003. New routes from Edinburgh and Weeze to SXF begin later this autumn.
- Southwest is putting more pressure on United and Frontier at Denver (DEN) by starting three new routes this week. Sacramento (SMF) in California will be served twice-daily, while Fort Lauderdale (FLL) and New Orleans (MSY) will get daily flights. United already operates all of these routes, while Frontier operates to Sacramento and Fort Lauderdale. Southwest now flies to 28 destinations from Denver.