New routes launched during the last week
(Tuesday 13 April – Monday 19 April):
Route of the Week:
United Airlines’ Washington to Bahrain
- United Airlines began serving Bahrain (BAH) on 18 April. The American major now operates daily flights from Washington Dulles (IAD) via Kuwait (KWI) using 777-200ERs. This is the first direct air service between Bahrain and the United States since Gulf Air dropped its New York JFK service in 1997. For United, it is also the airline’s 15th capital to capital route. Dr Osama Al Ali, CEO of Bahrain Airport Company, commented: “With United Airlines flying to Bahrain daily, we have now expanded our network to include another important destination via a highly acclaimed carrier. We want to grow our relationship with United Airlines to become one of the prime destinations on their route map to the Middle East. That means operating more flights, to more destinations, including non – stop to the Mid West and the West Coast. As we strengthen our ties with United Airlines, I am confident we can take Bahrain International Airport to new heights.”
Cake of the Week:
JetLink Express’s Nairobi to Khartoum
- JetLink Express launched five weekly CRJ100 flights between its Nairobi (NBE) base and Khartoum (KRT) on 15 April. The route is operated in competition with Kenya Airways’ six weekly and the Eritrean airline Nasair’s four weekly flights. Both competitors use larger 737 aircraft.
- Alitalia has launched two seasonal, domestic routes from Milan Malpensa (MXP) on 16 April. The southern Italian destinations Brindisi (BDS) and Lamezia Terme (SUF) will each be served daily with A320s until the end of October.
- Belavia, the Belarusian national airline, launched six weekly CRJ200 services to Moscow Vnukovo (VKO) from its Minsk (MSQ) base, a journey scheduled to last 80 minutes, on 15 April. The airline already serves the other two Moscow airports Sheremetyevo and Domodedovo three and two times daily, respectively.
- easyJet, which was supposed to launch a new base at Doncaster/Sheffield (DSA) on 19 April, at least had time to launch four weekly flights from Bristol (BRS) to Paphos (PFO) in Cyprus on 14 April, before the volcanic ash cloud disrupted large parts of European air traffic. Although this is the airport’s only scheduled service to Cyprus, charter flights to both Paphos and Larnaca compete with the new easyJet service.
- Egyptair launched flights to Paphos (PFO) from its Cairo (CAI) hub. On 17 April, the airline began serving the Cypriot destination with two weekly flights using 737-800s. The airline already serves Larnaca four times weekly in competition with Cyprus Airways’ two weekly flights.
- Frontier launched three new routes out of Denver (DEN) on 19 April. Louisville, KY (SDF) gets the highest frequency and capacity with daily A319 services that compete with United Airlines’ also daily flights. Branson, MO (BKG) and Green Bay, WI (GRB) will be served with E-190s, four and three times weekly respectively. The Green Bay service is seasonal and will operate until 22 October.
- Jet Airways launched daily flights between Mumbai (BOM) and Johannesburg (JNB) on 14 April. The flights, which will be operated on 220-seat A330-200s, compete with South African Airways’ four weekly flights. In addition to the potential of the large Indian diaspora in South Africa, Jet Airways’ CEO Nikos Kardassis comments: “Jet Airways is delighted to enter Africa with its daily Mumbai-Johannesburg service. South Africa’s reputation as a leading tourist and business destination, and the fact that it will play host to the 2010 FIFA World Cup also presents a huge opportunity for Jet Airways.”
- Kingfisher Airlines have launched flights to Bangkok (BKK) from both Mumbai (BOM) and Delhi (DEL) on 17 April. These launches are the airline’s fourth and third international routes from the two airports respectively. The each six weekly flights will be operated with A320s and both enter already competitive markets. On the Mumbai route, competition comes from Jet Airways (14/w), Thai Airways (10/w), Indian Airlines (7/w) and Cathay Pacific (3/w), while the Delhi service competes with Thai Airways’ twice daily as well as Jet Airways’, Indian Airlines’ and Cathay Pacific’s each daily flights. Kingfisher Airlines’ EVP Commercial Manoj Chacko commented: “Kingfisher Airlines has the largest network in India and flies to many cities that are served only by Kingfisher Airlines. The Mumbai – Bangkok flight offers excellent connectivity with Ahmedabad, Goa, Nagpur, Indore amongst other cities”.
- Midwest Airlines launched a daily, non-stop service between Milwaukee (MKE) and San Francisco (SFO) on 19 April. The flights will be operated seasonally until 30 September with A319s and face competition from AirTran’s also daily service. The airline also operates the route year round as a stopping service via Kansas City.
- Ryanair has added another route to Béziers (BZR) on the French south coast. On 13 April, Stockholm Skavsta (NYO) was connected with a twice-weekly 737-800 service to the airport, which only is served by the Irish LCC, presently from Bristol, London Luton and Düsseldorf Weeze.
- Skymark became the second airline, after Korea’s Asiana Airlines, to launch flights into the brand new airport in Ibaraki (IBR) on 16 April, which counts as Tokyo’s third airport. The daily flights from Kobe (UKB) will be operated with 737-800s. Skymark has informed anna.aero that the route has been an instant success, with loads exceeding what the airline had anticipated.
- Spanair, the subject of this week’s airline analysis, managed to avoid major disruption to its route launches this week and launched five new routes, of which three were to Moroccan destinations. From the airline’s Barcelona (BCN) hub, three weekly flights were launched to Belgrade (BEG) on 15 April using 156-seat A320s. This is the first flight between the Serbian capital and Spain since November 1998, when JAT dropped its Madrid service. On 19 April, the airline managed to find a routing that avoided restricted airspace and thus launched its thrice-weekly A320 Zagreb (ZAG) service out of Barcelona as planned. The service will be operated in competition with Star Alliance partner Croatia Airlines, although the two airlines complement each other’s services by flying on different days of the week. The three Moroccan routes launched are all served twice-weekly. From Barcelona, Nador (NDR) was launched on 18 April, while Malaga (AGP) saw the addition of Marrakech (RAK) and Tangier (TNG) on 14 and 18 April respectively. The Nador service is operated in competition with Ándalus’s three weekly and Jet4You’s two weekly flights, while Ándalus also flies between Malaga and Marrakech twice-weekly.
- vivaaerobus launched six new routes in the last week, all operating twice-weekly with the airline’s 737-300s. On 13 April, Monterrey (MTY) saw the launch of four routes, to Ciudad Obregon (CEN), Los Mochis (LMM), Mexicali (MXL) and Morelia (MLM), while Tijuana (TIJ) received a route to Los Mochis (LMM). The Tijuana service is operated in competition with a daily service operated by Mexicana only, as AeroMéxico pulled out of the route at the end of February this year. As of 15 April, Guadalajara (GDL) is also connected with Puerto Vallarta (PVR) on vivaaerobus. The 200-kilometre route competes with AeroMéxico’s 26 weekly flights and Mexicana’s 14 flights a week.
Previous weeks’ launch celebrations