Wizz Air not chicken in entering Kiev market with one aircraft

Image: Wizz Air at Keiv
Clockwise: The shiny domestic Terminal A at Kiev Boryspil which will be used by Wizz. The more-shiny Terminal D being built with Japanese soft loans 2008-2011 (Boryspil is also promising a cheaper low cost terminal). A view across the river Dnieper – and a city of 2.7 million (Ukraine pop: 46 million). Ukraine and Poland – the just-announced hosts for UEFA’s Euro 2012 – the final will be played in Kiev.

By creating a local subsidiary, Wizz Air Ukraine, Budapest-based LCC Wizz Air has ventured into hitherto unknown territory for European LCCs. From Friday 11 July the airline will offer a total of seven domestic routes from its new base at Kiev Boryspil (KBP) airport. Five destinations will be served direct from Kiev while Simferopol will also be connected to Lviv and Kharkov. Thanks to the relatively short flight times and high utilisation of the aircraft all routes will be performed by a single A320.

Table: Aircraft based at Keiv

The aircraft departs KBP at 06:00 on every day of the week and returns just before midnight. Each day the aircraft is scheduled to fly 10 sectors which does not allow much room for technical problems.

Competition on the Kiev routes will be provided by:

Kharkov: Aerosvit (14 weekly departures), Dnieproavia (10)
Lviv: Aerosvit (14), Ukraine International (9)
Odessa: Aerosvit (22), Dnieproavia (5)
Simferopol: Aerosvit (28), Ukraine International (5), Ukrainian-Mediterranean (7)
Zaporozhye: Motor Sich (2)
Source: OAG Max Online for w/c 7 April 2008

The two other routes from Simferopol are not currently served by any airline. Last year Kiev’s Boryspil airport handled over 5.5 million passengers on a mix of domestic and international flights, with international traffic responsible for around 80% of passengers. Presumably Wizz Air will hope to base several aircraft in Ukraine in due course to gain economies of scale.

Map: Wizz air routes


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