New airline routes launched (10 – 16 September 2013)
Peach’s Okinawa Naha to Ishigaki
- Peach, the Japanese LCC in which All Nippon Airways (ANA) has a major stake, launched two new routes last Friday 13 September. Daily flights have been introduced between the airline’s base at Osaka Kansai (KIX) and Busan (PUS) in South Korea, a sector length of just 570 kilometres. Competition on the route comes from Air Busan, Asiana Airlines and Korean Air, who all operate the route with twice-daily flights. Peach’s second new route is between Okinawa (OKA) and Ishigaki (ISG), which are both cities on separate islands south of mainland Japan. You can read more about Okinawa Naha Airport in this week’s airport analysis. Competition on this route will be particularly fierce with ANA operating eight daily flights, Japan Transocean Air nine daily flights, and Skymark Airlines four daily flights. According to data from Airbus, Peach’s current fleet comprises 10 A320s.
TWIN JET’s Lyon to Le Havre
- TWIN JET, which just last week launched flights between Toulouse and Milan Malpensa, has inaugurated another domestic route this week on 16 September, linking France’s second city of Lyon (LYS) with Le Havre (LEH) in Normandy, in the north-west of the country. The route will again be operated by one of the regional carrier’s 19-seat Beech 1900s, but this time the service will be flown 10 times weekly – with each weekday seeing two round trips on the 566-kilometre route.
The rest of this week’s new routes (A – Z by airline)
- Alaska Airlines has launched its latest network addition on 16 September. The new domestic service from Portland, OR (PDX), one of the airlines’ hub airports, is operated daily to Dallas/Fort Worth, TX (DFW). The new route is a 2,600-kilometre sector and is operated using 737-800s. Alaska Airlines competes with American Airlines, which offers 27 flights weekly between the destinations.
- Asky Airlines began marketing services on 15 September between Lomé (LFW), its hub airport in Togo and Bissau (OXB), the capital city of Guinea-Bissau in West Africa. The service is being offered twice-weekly as an extension to the carrier’s current, five weekly operation, between Lomé, Accra and Monrovia. The new 820-kilometre addition between Monrovia and Bissau gives the total operation a 2,165-kilometre sector length. Asky Airlines operates the flights with no competition using Bombardier Q400s.
- Bangkok Airways, the Thai ’boutique’ airline, has launched a new route from its home base in Bangkok (BKK) to Mandalay (MDL) in Myanmar. The 1,010-kilometre sector will be flown four-times weekly using the airline’s A319s, and faces competition from Thai Airways, who also operate the route four-times weekly, with slightly larger A320s.
- flydubai began daily flights on Sunday 15 September from its home base in Dubai (DXB) to Kiev Zhulyany (IEV) in Ukraine. The 3,500-kilometre sector will be flown by the airline’s 737-800s, and complements the airline’s existing route to Kiev’s main airport, Borispol. This becomes the carrier’s fourth destination in Ukraine, as it also serves Donetsk and Kharkiv, and will next week be introducing flights to Odessa as well.
- Malindo Air, the Lion Air-backed LCC operating in Malaysia, has launched two new domestic routes last week from Kuala Lumpur (KUL) to Langkawi (LGK) and Penang (PEN). Both routes will be served daily using the airline’s 737-900s with frequency increasing in the coming months. Both routes are already very well served by AirAsia (70 weekly flights to Langkawi, and 63 to Penang) and Malaysia Airlines (49 weekly flights to Langkawi and 68 to Penang). Since launching flights from Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) in late March, Malindo Air has already dropped its route to Tawau. It also started domestic flights in August from Kuala Lumpur’s old airport at Subang using ATR 72s. As of now, the airline operates seven routes from KLIA, and six routes from Subang. All of these are domestic with the exception of the carrier’s recently launched Dhaka service from KLIA.
- Volotea began two more domestic services within Italy on 16 September with its 125-seat 717s, commencing operations between both Palermo (PMO) and Naples (NAP), and Turin (TRN). Flights from Palermo to the northern Italian city will be flown thrice weekly (Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays) against Alitalia’s daily service. Competition will be stiffer on the four times weekly Naples to Turin city pair, with Alitalia offering 23 weekly flights and Meridiana 12 weekly flights. While these will be the only two routes currently flown by the airline to the Italian ‘motor city’ of Turin, they will be the 14th route from Palermo in the north-west of Sicily, and the fourth from Naples.
- Xiamen Airlines, the Chinese regional carrier that is 51%-owned by China Southern Airlines, began serving Jakarta (CGK) for the first time last week. On 12 September it launched four weekly flights from Fuzhou (FOC), followed on 14 September by thrice-weekly flights from Xiamen (XMN). Both routes are served by the airline’s 737-700s. Xiamen Airlines will celebrate the first anniversary of its membership of the SkyTeam alliance in late November. Next July the airline expects to take delivery of its first (of six) 787 Dreamliners, with all six being delivered by the end of 2015.