New airline routes launched (5 September 2017 – 11 September 2017)


Ryanair’s London Stansted to Pardubice

The first ever regular flight from Pardubice to Western Europe started on 5 September as Ryanair commenced flights from London Stansted. The first flight from the UK landed at the Czech Republic airport (100km east of Prague) at 18:35 and departed at 19:00. Welcoming this landmark event along with the airline crew were: Eva Kadlecová, Commercial Manager, Pardubice Airport; Hana Šmejkalová CEO Pardubice Airport; Denis Barabas, Ryanair Sales and Marketing Executive CEE; and Libor Kříž, Sales Executive Pardubice Airport.

Ryanair celebrated the first flight on its new daily Glasgow service to Frankfurt on 5 September, the first of its W17/18 routes from its Scottish base. The Irish ULCC’s winter schedule includes 18 routes in total, with three new city pairs to Frankfurt, Krakow and Madrid. More than capable of handling this German sausage-inspired cake were: Ryanair crew members Melina Mouselimi and Anastasia Suhtina; Paul White, Business Development Manager, Glasgow Airport; and Laura Downie Ryanair crew.

One of six new routes launched by Ryanair from its recently announced 85th base at Memmingen was a twice-weekly service to Stockholm Skavsta. The new airport pair, which commenced on 5 September, was heralded with this route launch cake in Sweden.

  • Ryanair had another typically quiet week at the office, launching 25 routes from three bases – 17 routes from Frankfurt (FRA), six from Memmingen (FMM) and two from London Stansted (STN). The average sector length of these new routes is 1,400 kilometres, with the longest being the 3,236-kilometre flight between Frankfurt and Tenerife South (TFS), whereas the shortest was the 489-kilometre hop from the German hub to Milan Bergamo (BGY). Again proving that there is a new Ryanair in town these days, the average frequency of the 25 routes is a lofty 4.32, a far cry from the twice-weekly start-up frequency that used to proliferate the ULCC’s launches historically. Just under half (12) of the airport pairs will face direct competition from incumbent airlines. See how this route’s Fire Truck Water Arch did versus the three other competing airports in this week’s Arch of Triumph.
Launched From To Aircraft (WF) Competition
05-Sep Frankfurt (FRA) Athens (ATH) B738 (7) Lufthansa (21), Aegean Airlines (7)
Glasgow (GLA)  
Krakow (KRK) Lufthansa (28)
London Stansted (STN)  
Madrid (MAD) Lufthansa (28), Iberia (21), Air Europa (14), LATAM Airlines (7)
Manchester (MAN) B738 (6) Lufthansa (28)
Milan Bergamo (BGY) B738 (7)  
Pisa (PSA) B738 (3)  
Porto (OPO) B738 (6) Lufthansa (21)
Seville (SVQ) B738 (3) Lufthansa (4)
Tenerife South (TFS) Condor (4), TUIfly (3)
Valencia (VLC) B738 (7) Lufthansa (14)
Venice Treviso (TSF) B738 (7)  
London Stansted (STN) Aalborg (AAL) B738 (3)  
Pardubice (PED)  
Memmingen (FMM) Oradea (OMR) B738 (2)  
Stockholm Skavsta (NYO)  
06-Sep Frankfurt (FRA) Catania (CTA) B738 (4) Condor (3)
Lanzarote (ACE) B738 (2) Condor (3), SunExpress Germany (2), TUIfly (1)
Toulouse (TLS) B738 (4) Lufthansa (21)
Memmingen (FMM) Fez (FEZ) B738 (2)  
08-Sep Frankfurt (FRA) Gran Canaria (LPA) TUIfly (6), Condor (5)
Memmingen (FMM) Seville (SVQ)  
Thessaloniki (SKG)  
Warsaw Modlin (WMI) B738 (3)  
Source: OAG Schedules Analyser w/c 11 September. WF = Weekly frequencies.

Icelandair’s Reykjavik/Keflavik to Tampa

Icelandair commenced Reykjavik/Keflavik’s 18th US destination on 6 September with the introduction of a twice-weekly operation to Tampa. The airline already serves Orlando in Florida.

The celebrations continued in Florida, with this volcanic cake erupting to take centre stage in Tampa. Getting ready to tuck-in along with the Icelandair inaugural flight crew was Chris Minner, Executive VP of Marketing for the US airport.

  • Icelandair began its 12th US destination from its Reykjavik/Keflavik hub on 6 September, with the introduction of twice-weekly (Wednesdays and Sundays) flights to Tampa (TPA). The 5,779-kilometre route is operated on the carrier’s 183-seat 757-200s and faces no direct competition. Becoming Keflavik’s 23rd route in North America, the new service further consolidates the US as the airport’s largest country market served. See how this route’s Fire Truck Water Arch did versus the three other competing airports in this week’s Arch of Triumph.

The rest of this week’s new routes (A – Z by airline)


Nashville has certainly caught Virgin America fever with this suitcase cake, designed in the corporate colours of its latest airline, although flights will operate as Alaska Airlines. Seen posing with the cake are Virgin America crew along with Nashville Airport’s: Director of Air Service, Trudy Carson; Acting President and CEO, Doug Kreulen; and Manager Airport Affairs, Josh Powell. Kreulen also took the opportunity to test out the first class cabin of the airport’s newest carrier.

  • Alaska Airlines, operated by recent acquisition Virgin America, commenced its latest route from San Francisco (SFO) on 5 September, a 3,161-kilometre link to Nashville (BNO). While Virgin America is a new brand at Nashville, Alaska Airlines already serves the Tennessee airport with a daily service from Seattle-Tacoma. “We are enormously pleased that Virgin America will begin operations at Nashville Airport,” said Doug Kreulen, Acting President and CEO of the Metropolitan Nashville Airport Authority. “Virgin America is yet another new airline to join the Nashville roster, giving Middle Tennessee business and leisure travellers even more choices for traveling to and from the Bay Area.” The route, which will operated by Virgin America’s A319s, is already flown by United Airlines which when referring to OAG Schedules Analyser data offers 13 non-stop flights a week.

Regional Express (Rex) was awarded the route licence to operate passenger air services between Port Augusta and Adelaide after the previous operator exited the route in May. At the launch, Port Augusta ground staff posed with Rex Sales Manager South Australia Kylie Good (second from left) and Port Augusta Mayor Sam Johnson (middle).

  • Regional Express (Rex) launched its service between Port Augusta (PUG) and Adelaide (ADL) on 11 September. The route will also extend through to Coober Pedy (CPD) which means that for the first time, there will be air services linking Port Augusta to Coober Pedy, significantly enhancing the connectivity of these two cities for business, government, mining and tourism related travel. Operated by the airline’s 34-seat Saab 340 fleet, the three times weekly schedule will mean up to 10,000 seats a year will be provided on the connection. Rex Network Strategy & Sales Manager Warrick Lodge said: “Rex looks forward to building a strong partnership with the South Australian Government, Port Augusta City Council and the Port Augusta community to ensure we can continue to provide a sustainable air service for the long-term benefit of the region.” No other carriers operate this routing.

As part of the opening ceremony of the SCAT Airlines flight from Aktobe to Moscow Vnukovo, a cake-cutting was undertaken by Vasily Yakovlevich Alexandrov, General Director, Vnukovo Airport and Sytnik Alexandra Vladimirovna, VP Marketing, SCAT Airlines. The first passenger on the flight, which was Christmas Larissa, received gifts and souvenirs from the airport and SCAT Airlines.

  • SCAT Airlines became the first airline in Kazakhstan to start flights to Moscow Vnukovo (VKO) on 6 September. The service, which will be carried out twice-weekly (Wednesdays and Fridays), was operated from Aktobe (AKX) on the airline’s CRJ 200 fleet. SCAT now operates three flights from Kazakhstan to Moscow with its Aktau and Shymkent services both flown into Moscow Domodedovo. No other airline operates this airport pair. See how this route’s Fire Truck Water Arch did versus the three other competing airports in this week’s Arch of Triumph.

Rome Fiumicino became the first European destination operated from Moscow Zhukovsly on 8 September, with 152 passengers on board the inaugural Ural Airlines flight. At the cake cutting ceremony were: Head of Operation Ural Airlines Vitaly Ryzhikov; Svetlana Poloskova, who won a social media contest and received two tickets to Rome; Senior Aviation Marketing Manager, Moscow Zhukovsky Airport Galina Telpiz; and Deputy General Director Ramport Aero Evgeny Solodilin.

  • Ural Airlines commenced a new route from Moscow Zhukovsky (ZIA) to Rome Fiumicino (FCO) on 8 September, a service it had originally wanted to start in April. The delayed operation will still be flown weekly on Fridays by the airline’s A320 fleet, but this revised schedule represents a change from its initial plan to fly on Sundays. There is no direct competition on this airport pair, however Aeroflot and Alitalia offer a combined 35 weekly flights between Moscow Sheremetyevo and Fiumicino. See how this route’s Fire Truck Water Arch did versus the three other competing airports in this week’s Arch of Triumph.

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