Air India’s Delhi to Copenhagen
A cake was baked in Delhi to celebrate the start of Air India’s route to Copenhagen on 16 September. Seen cutting the cake in Delhi before the departure of the inaugural flight are Air India’s Commercial Director Pankaj Srivastava along with Chairman and MD Rajiv Bansal. Copenhagen becomes Air India’s second destination in Scandinavia after Stockholm Arlanda.
Air India arrived in Copenhagen later the same day, beginning the three times weekly service from the Indian capital. Among the celebrations were a cake and ribbon cutting ceremony. Seen partaking in the cutting of the cake are: Morten Mortensen, Director of Airlines Sales and Route Development, Copenhagen Airport; Thomas Woldbye, CEO Copenhagen Airport; Rajiv Bansal, Chairman and MD, Air India; and Pankaj Srivastava, Commercial Director, Air India.
- Air India has made Copenhagen (CPH) its second destination in Scandinavia after Stockholm Arlanda and its first in Denmark, with the Star Alliance member starting a three times weekly (Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays) service from Delhi (DEL) on 16 September. “If there is one airline that is happy to expand its network to the world’s highest-ranking country on the happiness index, then it’s Air India,” said Pankaj Srivastava, Commercial Director of Air India at a ceremony at the Danish airport. “This new route to India is a historic breakthrough. The number of returning Indians has doubled worldwide over a few years. Now we’ve got a hole in a huge market, not just the capital, but all Denmark and South Sweden can enjoy, ” commented Mikkel Aarø-Hansen, CEO of Wonderful Copenhagen. The 5,837-kilometre route will be flown by Air India on its fleet of 787-8s. With this launch, Air India now serves 10 destinations in Europe from Delhi, with Copenhagen joining Birmingham, Frankfurt, London Heathrow, Madrid, Milan Malpensa, Paris CDG, Rome Fiumicino, Stockholm Arlanda and Vienna. See how Copenhagen Airport’s FTWA compares to others from around the world.
Porter Airlines’ Toronto City to Fredericton (via Ottawa)
Fredericton Airport became the latest destination to join Porter Airlines’ network on 12 September. To officially open the new service from Toronto City, which operates via Ottawa, a ribbon cutting ceremony took place on the apron after arrival. Seen taking control of the cutting by holding the giant scissors are: Robert Deluce, CEO Porter Airlines; Mike O’Brien, Mayor of Fredericton; and Johanne Gallant, CEO of Fredericton Airport. A cake was also baked to celebrated the carrier’s arrival. Porter Airlines will serve Fredericton daily on its Q400s.
- Porter Airlines has now added Fredericton (YFC) in New Brunswick to its network, starting a daily Q400-operated service from Toronto City (YTZ) via Ottawa (YOW) on 12 September. “The enthusiastic welcome for our inaugural flight is something that we want to build on to ensure Porter Airlines has a long, successful presence in Fredericton,” said Robert Deluce, President and CEO of Porter Airlines at the launch. “We’re thrilled to come together with our entire community in welcoming Porter Airlines to Fredericton,” said Johanne Gallant, President and CEO of Fredericton Airport. “Our businesses and residents are excited to have this new option for accessing key markets and leisure travel. The arrival is great news for New Brunswick’s Capital Region,” Gallant added. While no other carrier offers direct flights on the 1,044-kilometre link between Toronto City Airport and Fredericton, it should be noted that Air Canada and WestJet both already provide a three times daily service on the city pair, with both serving Fredericton non-stop from Toronto Pearson. In relation to the Ottawa sector of Porter’s new service, Air Canada already offers five weekly flights on the 713-kilometre airport pair with Fredericton. Porter’s expansion in New Brunswick does not stop with Fredericton. The carrier on 21 September will start a daily connection between Toronto City and Saint John, a link it will also offer via Ottawa.
The rest of this week’s new routes (A – Z by airline)
A press conference was held at Trelew Airport on 16 September, the day which witnessed Aerolineas Argentinas begin flights from Cordoba. Among those taking part were: Herman Muller, Minister of Tourism for Chubut Province (third-left); Adrián Maderna, Mayor of Trelew (third-right) and Mariano Quevedo, Regional Manager, Aerolineas Argentinas (second-right). The 1,324-kilometre route from Cordoba will operate four times weekly on 737-700s.
- Aerolineas Argentinas expanded its network from Cordoba (COR) this week, connecting Argentina’s second largest city to Trelew (REL) in the Chubut Province of Argentina. Last week the airline had begun services to Santiago in Chile on 10 September with a three times weekly frequency. The connection to Trelew launched on 16 September with four weekly rotations. While the 1,324-kilometre sector to Trelew, which operates on 737-700s, will face no direct competition, the 660-kilometre link to the Chilean capital, flown by E190s, will go head-to-head with LATAM Airlines (13 weekly flights) and Sky Airline (daily). With these two launches during the past fortnight, Aerolineas Argentinas now offers 17 destinations from Cordoba on 158 weekly flights when analysing OAG schedules. See how Trelew Airport’s FTWA compares to others from around the world.
Among those taking part in the ribbon cutting at Colima to officially open Aeromexico’s new route from the capital are: Juan Carlos Benavides Araiza, Colima District Manager, Aeromexico (left); Giancarlo Mulinelli, National Sales Director, Aeromexico (third left); José Ignacio Peralta Sánchez, Governor of Colima (fourth right); Anko Van Der Werff, Executive Director of Revenue, Aeromexico (third right); César Castañeda Vázquez del Mercado, Secretary of Tourism of Colima (second right); and Luis Enrique Aguirre Martínez, GD, Tourism Promotion Trust of the State of Colima (right).
- Aeromexico has added another domestic spoke to its Mexico City (MEX) network, starting a daily service to Colima (CLQ) on 18 September. The 472-kilometre route will be flown by the airline on its E170s, with it going head-to-head with Aeromar on the city pair, with the latter carrier offering 19 weekly flights to the Mexican capital from the Mexican West Coast city according to OAG schedules.
A cake was made to toast the start of Air India Express’ new four times weekly connection between Madurai and Singapore. For Air India Express, this becomes its fourth link to Singapore after Chennai, Kolkata and Tiruchirappalli.
- Air India Express commenced its fourth route to Singapore (SIN) on 15 September in the form of a four times weekly link from Madurai (IXM). The 3,013-kilometre sector, which will no face direct competition and will be flown on the carrier’s 737-800s. Along with Madurai, Air India Express also links Singapore to Chennai, Kolkata and Tiruchirappalli. With the launch of flights between Madurai and Singapore, the latter is now connected to 16 destinations in India, served by a total of eight carriers on 241 weekly flights when referring to OAG schedules.
Air Seoul commenced flights to Guam on 13 September. Seen celebrating the new A321-operated service from Seoul Incheon along with the crew, Miss World Guam 2016 Phoebe Denight Palisoc, and Miss Earth Guam Emma Mae Sheedy, are Ryu Kwang-Hee, President and CEO of Air Seoul and Ray Tenorio, Lieutenant Governor of Guam.
The day before the inauguration of flights to Guam, Air Seoul commenced operations to Osaka Kansai where Ryu Kwang-Hee, President and CEO of Air Seoul also spoke. Once Kwang-Hee’s speech was complete, a ribbon cutting ceremony took place to officially open the new route. Air Seoul becomes the eighth carrier to link Seoul Incheon to Osaka Kansai.
- Air Seoul expanded its route offering this week by introducing Osaka Kansai (KIX) and Guam (GUM) to its Seoul Incheon (ICN) network. The former, which began on 12 September, will be flown by Air Seoul twice-daily, with it becoming the eighth carrier to link the 859-kilometre airport pair, with Jeju Airlines (31 weekly flights), Peach Aviation (28), Asiana Airlines (25), Korean Air (21), Eastar Jet (17), t’way air (17) and Jin Air (14) already serving the airport pair. The following day services to Guam were inaugurated. The 3,224-kilometre link will be flown by Air Seoul six times weekly according to OAG schedules, with it joining Jeju Airlines (21 weekly flights), Korean Air (14), Jin Air (7) and t’way air (7) on the sector. “To provide diversity to the customers, we have decided to launch a new route between Incheon and Guam because Guam is the most popular destination for Koreans,” stated Air Seoul President and CEO Ryu Kwang-hee at the launch. Both routes launched this week will be flown by Air Seoul on its fleet of A321s. As a result of Guam and Kansai becoming Air Seoul destinations, it now means that the carrier offers 12 routes from Incheon, with Hong Kong and Tokyo Narita the next planned destinations to join its network, with both expected to launch on 31 October.
Seen celebrating the first link between Malaysia and Nha Trang in Vietnam are: Spencer Lee, Head of Commercial for AirAsia; Dato’ Fam Lee Ee, Board of Directors for AirAsia; and Nguyen Thị Le Thanh, Vice Director of Khanh Hoa Department of Tourism; along with two AirAsia crew. Flights from Kuala Lumpur will operate daily.
- AirAsia has become the first airline to link Nha Trang (CXR) in Vietnam to Malaysia, beginning a daily service from Kuala Lumpur (KUL) on 14 September. “Vietnam is a key market for us and we are humbled to be able to continue to provide more connectivity between Vietnam and Malaysia. Nha Trang is a great addition to our network and we see a good potential in the destination,” commented Spencer Lee, Head of Commercial for AirAsia. “This year is a big year for ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) as we celebrate the 50th anniversary of the ASEAN formation with many key activities happening in the region. As a truly ASEAN airline, we are proud to continue our commitment towards growing ASEAN and connecting the region further with direct route to Nha Trang,” Lee added. The 1,320-kilometre route from Kuala Lumpur to Nha Trang will be flown by AirAsia daily on its fleet of A320s facing no direct competition. With this launch, AirAsia now serves four destinations in Vietnam from Kuala Lumpur on 70 weekly flights, with Nha Trang joining Da Nang, Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. See how Nha Trang Airport’s FTWA compares to others from around the world.
Kansas City commisioned this cake to celebrate the start of Alaska Airlines’ new daily service from San Francisco which commenced on 18 September. United Airlines already serves the 2,406-kilometre link 20 times weekly.
- Alaska Airlines has entered into direct competition with United Airlines from San Francisco (SFO) to Albuquerque (ABQ) and Kansas City (MCI). The 1,439- and 2,406-kilometre sectors, both of which were inaugurated on 18 September, will be flown daily on the carrier’s fleet of E175s. United links San Francisco to Albuquerque 13 times weekly and Kansas City 20 times weekly. With this launch, Alaska Airlines now serves 10 routes from San Francisco, while Virgin America which is now owned by the Alaska Air Group, operates 24 routes from the Californian city. It should be noted that both carriers operate flights to Seattle-Tacoma, Portland and San José del Cabo in Mexico from the US West Coast hub, meaning in total both carriers combined operate 31 different city pairs from San Francisco.
Amaszonas commenced flights between Uyuni and Sucre on 13 September, with passengers seen disembarking the inaugural flight at the former airport. While the first flight originated in Sucre, when referring to OAG schedules other services will depart Uyuni first, with flights leaving three times weekly (Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays) at 08:40, arriving in Sucre at 09:10. Return flights then depart at 09:40, landing back in Uyuni at 10:10.
- Amaszonas launched a Bolivian domestic route between Uyuni (UYU) and Sucre (SRE) on 13 September. The 134-kilometre link, which has an estimated flying time of 30 minutes, is currently not served by another carrier, with Amaszonas scheduled to connect the two southern Bolivian cities with three weekly (Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays) flights operated by its 19-seat Metro fleet.
Seen celebrating and promoting the launch of Fly Corporate flights between Narrabri and Sydney on 13 September are: Geoff Woodham, Marketing Manager, Fly Corporate; Cathy Redding, Mayor of Narrabri; and Stewart Todd, GM at Narrabri Shire Council. The 420-kilometre route will be flown by the airline every weekday on its 19-seat Metro fleet.
- Fly Corporate has begun its second route from Narrabri (NAA), starting a 420-kilometre link to Sydney (SYD) on 13 September. The daily weekday service, which joins the carrier’s existing 457-kilometre connection to Brisbane, will be flown on Fly Corporate’s 19-seat Metro fleet. No other airline currently operates between the two South Wales airports, although the link has been served in the past. During the past decade other carriers which have also flown the route include Brindabella Airlines (June-December 2013) and Aeropelican Air Services (March 2009-June 2013) when referring to OAG schedules.
Belgrade Airport welcomed the arrival of Hainan Airlines’ first flight from Beijing on 15 September. The route operates via the carrier’s existing Prague operation. Seen cutting the ribbon in the Serbian capital are: Li Manchang, Chinese Ambassador to Serbia; Ana Brnabić, Prime Minister of Serbia; Zorana Mihajlović, Deputy Prime Minister of Serbia, and the Minister of Construction, Transport and Infrastructure; and Quan Dong, VP Hainan Airlines.
Seen speaking at the launch of Hainan Airlines’ new route between Shanghai Pudong and Tel Aviv at the latter airport is Chinese Ambassador to Israel Zhan Yongxin. Launched 12 September, the airline’s second route to the Israeli city will be flown three times weekly on its 787-9s. The carrier already serves Tel Aviv from Beijing five times weekly.
- Hainan Airlines has commenced two new long-haul routes this week which included the introduction of another European airport to its network. Before that on 12 September the carrier began its second link to Tel Aviv (TLV), starting a three times weekly service to the Israeli city from Shanghai Pudong (PVG). The 7,976-kilometre route, which no other airline currently operates, will be flown on the airline’s 787-9s. This route adds to Hainan Airlines’ existing route to Tel Aviv from Beijing. On 15 September the Chinese carrier welcomed Belgrade (BEG) to its route map, starting a twice-weekly (Mondays and Fridays) link from Beijing (PEK) that operates via its existing Prague operation. The 7,420-kilometre connection to the Serbian capital faces no direct competition and will be flown on the airline’s fleet of A330-300s according to OAG schedules. See how Belgrade Airport’s FTWA compares to others from around the world.
Celebrations were held at Tokyo Narita on 15 September to herald the start of flights to Kona. Among the festivities was a braking of the Kagami-biraki, a Japanese traditional ceremony which literally translates to ‘Opening the Mirror’. Among those taking part were: Yasuo Ishii, Head of Narita Airport; Junko Okawa, Senior Managing Executive Officer, Japan Airlines; Kazunari Koizumi, Mayor of Narita City; and Erik Takahata, Director of Tourism Bureau of Hawaii State.
Japan Airlines resumed flights to Kona in Hawaii on 15 September after a seven-year hiatus. Seen speaking at the launch is David Ige, Governor of Hawaii, who was joined by Masaru Onishi, Chairman of Japan Airlines. Both gentlemen then greeted passengers as they disembarked the flight from Tokyo Narita. The route will be flown daily on 767-300s.
- Japan Airlines resumed service to Kona (KOA) after a seven-year hiatus on 15 September, linking the Hawaiian airport to Tokyo Narita (NRT). Last flown in 2010, Japan Airlines will now offer a daily service on the 6,391-kilometre using its 767-300s. “Japan Airlines has been a partner with the state of Hawaii for more than 50 years and growing the visitor industry, being respectful of what makes Hawaii a special place,” said Hawaii Governor David Ige in remarks to the crowd at Kona Airport on the day of the carrier’s return. “The people, place and culture of Hawaii is what draws the visitors from Japan and they have been terrific guests here to our islands.” Along with Kona, Japan Airlines also serves Honolulu in Hawaii from Narita, while Boston, Chicago O’Hare, Dallas/Fort Worth, Los Angeles, New York JFK and San Francisco in the US are also served by the oneworld member from the Japanese airport. No other airline links Kona to Narita, however Hawaiian Airlines offers a three times weekly link from Kona to Tokyo Haneda, an airport pair which the latter airline operates on A330-200s. See how Kona Airport’s FTWA compares to others from around the world.
JetSMART’s inaugural flight to Puerto Montt received a water arch salute as it taxied to stand on 14 September. With the launch of flights from Santiago, JetSMART is now the fourth carrier to serve the 917-kilometre airport pair.
- JetSMART, the new Chiliean ultra-low-cost carrier, continued its expansion on 14 September, starting a five times weekly service between Santiago (SCL) and Puerto Montt (PMC). The 917-kilometre route will be flown by the carrier on its fleet of A320s, with it joining LATAM Airlines (55 weekly flights), Sky Airline (29) and Latin American Wings (11) on the city pair. See how Puerto Montt Airport’s FTWA compares to others from around the world.
Pictured at London Gatwick on the day of Norwegian’s launch to Denver are: Kim Day, CEO of Denver Airport; Michael Hancock, Mayor of Denver; Dominic Tucker, Head of UK & Ireland Sales, Norwegian; and Jennifer Newman, Airline Relations Manager, London Gatwick Airport. A cake was also made to celebrate the new service.
Seattle-Tacoma became a new addition to the Norwegian network on 17 September, with the carrier launching a four times weekly service from London Gatwick. A small celebration at the gate was held for inaugural passengers.
- Norwegian has expanded its transatlantic offering from London Gatwick (LGW) this week, with it now linking the UK capital to Denver (DEN) and Seattle-Tacoma (SEA). The former, launched on 16 September, will operate twice-weekly (Tuesdays and Saturdays), while the latter, which was inaugurated on the following day, will be flown four times weekly. “We are excited to add Denver and Seattle to our growing list of US destinations, offering passengers the only direct route from London Gatwick to these iconic cities,” commented Thomas Ramdahl, CCO Norwegian. While both 7,530- and 7,739-kilometre sectors indeed face no direct competition, it should be noted that British Airways offers service to both cities from London Heathrow, while Virgin Atlantic Airways also links Europe’s busiest airport to Seattle. Further competition on the Denver link will come at the beginning of S18, with United Airlines planning to link the Mile High City to Heathrow. Adding to Ramdahl’s comment, Guy Stephenson, CCO London Gatwick, explained: “Norwegian is responding to strong demand on both sides of the Atlantic and these new routes are likely to be popular with both tourists and business passengers. Both destinations are established gateways to the spectacular American outdoors and are also prominent business centres with established hi-tech and advanced manufacturing industries.” Norwegian will utilise its 344-seat 787-9s on both airport pairs. By launching Denver and Seattle routes, the LCC now flies to nine destinations in the US from Gatwick, with Las Vegas being the only one not to operate year-round. However, its US expansion does not stop there, with the carrier planning to continue the US charge at the beginning of S18, with Austin and Chicago O’Hare joining the carrier’s London network. See how Denver and Seattle-Tacoma airports FTWAs compare to others from around the world.
Seen cutting the ribbon to officially open Saudi Arabian Airlines’ new link between Jeddah and Mauritius are Mohammed Iqbal Latuna, Mauritian Ambassador to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and Nasser Al Jasser, DG of Saudi Arabian Airlines. The carrier will operate the 5,090-kilometre route three times weekly on its 787-9s.
- Saudi Arabian Airlines commenced flights between Jeddah (JED) and Mauritius (MRU) on 14 September. The 5,090-kilometre link will be flown by the SkyTeam member three times weekly on its fleet of 787-9s, with no other carrier operating direct competition. “We hope that business between Mauritius and Saudi Arabia will grow and be sustainable. This will obviously improve trade and tourism between the two countries,” said Nasser Al Jasser, DG of Saudi Arabian Airlines. Jeddah becomes the second destination in the Middle East served non-stop from Mauritius, with the other being Dubai, a route which Emirates operates twice-daily on its A380s. According to OAG Traffic Analyser data around 9,000 passengers travelled indirectly between Mauritius and Saudi Arabia in 2016, with 70% of traffic on the country pairing choosing Emirates’ service via Dubai as their preferred routing between the two nations. See how Mauritius Airport’s FTWA compares to others from around the world.
Seen pictured in Denpasar are the crew which operated the inaugural Thai Lion Air flight to the Indonesian airport from Bangkok Don Mueang. The carrier will operate the 2,984-kilometre route daily on its fleet of 737-800s.
- Thai Lion Air commenced flights between Bangkok Don Mueang (DMK) and Denpasar (DPS) on 15 September, a route that the carrier will operate daily. The 2,984-kilometre sector will be flown by Thai Lion Air on 737-800s, with it joining Thai AirAsia (daily flights) and Indonesia AirAsia (four times weekly) which both already serve the route. Denpasar becomes the second destination in Indonesia that Thai Lion Air serves from the Thai capital, with it already flying to Jakarta. In total Thai Lion Air now offers 24 routes from Don Mueang on over 450 weekly flights. Along with Denpasar, the airline has another two routes scheduled to launch before the start of W17/18 from Don Mueang, with Kochi (launching 20 October) and Kunming (29 October) being the chosen destinations.
Pictured at the launch of Tigerair Australia’s new service between Brisbane and Canberra are: Andrew Maister, Commercial Director, Tigerair Australia; Stephen Byron, MD Canberra Airport; and Andrew Barr, Chief Minister of the Australian Capital Territory. The airline will operate the 954-kilometre domestic route three times weekly on its A320s.
- Tigerair Australia launched its latest domestic route on 14 September, a 954-kilometre link between Brisbane (BNE) and Canberra (CBR). Flown three times weekly on its fleet of A320s, the airline will go head-to-head with Qantas (35 weekly flights) and Virgin Australia Airlines (24) on the city pair. “Whether it’s seeing our national institutions or enjoying our world-class restaurants and cafes, visitors from Brisbane will find plenty to do here in Canberra. I hope to see many visitors from Brisbane in the nation’s capital via this new Tigerair Australia service,” commented Andrew Barr, Chief Minister of the Australian Capital Territory. Canberra becomes the eighth destination served by the airline from Brisbane, with 100 weekly departures now being offered from the Queensland airport. For Canberra this is the second connection that Tigerair Australia offers from the nation’s capital, with Brisbane joining Melbourne services which are now operated eight times weekly (twice-daily on Fridays).
Volaris celebrated its second route to San Antonio on 15 September, commencing a daily service from Mexico City. Seen taking charge with the scissors to cut the ceremonial ribbon are Juliana Ramirez, Ancillary Revenue Manager, Volaris, and Russ Handy, Director of Aviation for the City of San Antonio. The carrier also links the Texan city to Guadalajara.
- Volaris has added a second route to San Antonio (SAT) this week, starting a daily service from Mexico City (MEX) on 15 September. The link from the Mexican capital adds to Volaris’ existing route from Guadalajara to the Texan city. The 1,123-kilometre route between Mexico City and San Antonio will be operated on the carrier’s fleet of A320s, with it joining Interjet (12 times weekly) and Aeromexico (daily) on the airport pair. With this launch, Volaris now serves eight destinations in the US from Mexico City, with this route to San Antonio being its only one in Texas. Volaris does serve Austin, Dallas/Fort Worth and Houston Intercontinental in Texas, albeit from Guadalajara.
Wizz Air launched flights between the capitals of Poland and Vilnius on 18 September, commencing a four times weekly service that will be flown on the airlines A320s. The Lithuanian capital airport celebrated the new service with a cake and ribbon cutting to officially open the route, with Olaf Martens, Director of Vilnius Airport, taking charge of proceedings.
- Wizz Air launched a European capital connection on 18 September, starting a four times weekly service between Warsaw Chopin (WAW) and Vilnius (VNO). The 396-kilometre route will be flown on the ULCC’s fleet of A320s, with LOT Polish Airlines offering direct competition, serving the city pair with 34 weekly flights on a mixture of its CRJ 900s and Q400s. Warsaw becomes the first Wizz Air destination in Poland from Vilnius, with the carrier also linking the Lithuanian capital to a further 21 destinations year-round, while Grenoble in France is served during winter. A second route to Poland will begin on 21 December, the day Wizz Air will commence a three times weekly service to Gdansk. Along with Gdansk, a seasonal route to Agadir will start on 1 November.
Pictured in Tel Aviv are the crew which operated the inaugural WOW air flight between Reykjavik/Keflavik and the Israeli city on 12 September. The 5,272-kilometre route will be flown by the airline four times weekly on A321s.
- WOW air has now begun service to Tel Aviv (TEL), with the carrier having inaugurated a four times weekly service from Reykjavik/Keflavik (KEF) on 12 September. The 5,272-kilometre route, the only connection operating between Iceland and Israel, will be operated by WOW air on its fleet of A321s. Flights leave Reykjavik/Keflavik at 18:15 on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays, arriving in Tel Aviv at 04:40 the following morning. Return flights leave Tel Aviv at 08:25 on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, getting back into Iceland at 13:30.