Ryanair dominant, but 11 other LCCs also serve Milan Bergamo

Logo: Milan Bergamo Air Berlin’s recent decision to transfer its Milan services from Milan Bergamo (Orio Al Serio International airport) to Milan Malpensa from the middle of June is a rare snub for the Italian airport which has seen traffic grow from half a million passengers in 1997 to nearly six million just 10 years later. This impressive growth can be attributed almost exclusively to low-cost carriers, in particular Ryanair which set up a base there in early 2003 having first started flying to the airport from its Frankfurt Hahn base in February 2002.

Chart: Milan Bergamo traffic 1994-2007
Source: ENAC

Despite it being a major base for Ryanair this has not put off other LCCs operating to the airport. A total of 12 LCCs currently operate scheduled services to Bergamo as well as a couple of ‘legacy’ carriers.

Chart: Bergamo airport seasonality
Source: Assaeroporti

Traffic in the first four months of 2008 continues to show impressive double-digit growth. Demand peaks in August as in-bound holiday makers head for the Italian lakes for which Bergamo is the most convenient airport.

Image: Ryanair’s Michael O’Leary
Ryanair’s Michael O’Leary shows off the airline’s goal of carrying 50 million passengers on Italian routes.

Ryanair: 39 routes and still expanding

Since launching its base in 2003, Ryanair has rapidly expanded its network to 39 routes with Trapani making it 40 in July. What is particularly impressive is that very few routes appear to have failed for the airline, with only Newcastle and Wroclaw services having been axed. Twenty of the routes are served at least daily with the remainder served three or four times weekly. London Stansted is served four times daily, while Girona and Rome Ciampino are served thrice daily.

Since the beginning of the year Ryanair has added new routes to Alghero, Arad, Billund, Gothenburg, Manchester, Riga and Santander. All of these routes are served either three or four times weekly.

Airline Frequency share Capacity share Number of routes
Ryanair 60.2% 66.2% 39
MyAir 12.4% 9.9% 15
Air Berlin 5.2% 5.0% 2
SkyEurope 5.5% 4.7% 2
Wizz Air 3.4% 3.5% 4
Transavia.com 2.5% 2.2% 1
Source: OAG Max Online for w/c 19 May 2008

Italian LCC MyAir serves 15 destinations of which eight are domestic routes (Bari, Brindisi, Cagliari, Catania, Naples, Olbia, Palermo and Reggio Calabria). Its international routes are to Bordeaux, Bucharest, Casablanca, Istanbul, Madrid, Paris Orly and Sofia.

Image: myair.com plane at Milan Bergamo
Italian LCC MyAir serves 15 destinations from Milan Bergamo, of which eight are domestic routes.

Other airlines operating to Bergamo include Alitalia (twice daily to Rome Fiumicino), Windjet (daily to Catania), Brussels Airlines (daily to Brussels), TUIfly.com (to Hannover), Jet2.com (to Leeds/Bradford), Blue Air (to Bucharest), Belle Air (to Tirana), Carpatair (to Timisoara) and bmibaby (to Birmingham). easyJet of course has a major base at Milan Malpensa where it is now the biggest carrier.

Passengers wishing to travel to Bucharest have an unlikely choice of three airlines – Blue Air, MyAir and Wizz Air. Check this week’s Milan – Bucharest farewatch to see who offers the most competitive fares.


  1. It’s not a seldom snub, but it’s very often in this side of the Italian country. Milan Malpensa’s society SEA, which is jointed in a society with SACBO, which rules the Milan Orio al Serio Airport, often plays such snubs to their Orio al Serio members. This is just one example. Moreover, they took from BGY also Luxair, then took Wizzair’s Budapest flights, then took NES’s long-haul scheduled flight, then tried to put DHL to MXP, leaving about 1,500 workers, jobless, then tried to purchase Ryanair. But O’Leary declared he would never leave to MXP in such a way as to damage Milan Orio al Serio.
    We suggest an investigation is needed here, because the situation has been going forward for several years and SACBO’s president of Orio al Serio Airport Mr. Miro Radici said he’d be force not to reveal BGY future plans to SACBO’s ceo SEA members to avoid spoil further Orio al Serio’s expansion plans.
    Moreover it has been made clear enough SEA would persuade airlines not to land to Orio al Serio, this also causing a negative and unuseful Orio al Serio image. We don’t know with which means SEA, which is participated in the size of 30% in Orio al Serio’s SACBO, is “persuading” potential customers of a consociated company, but all we spoke of above seems us to be illegal, apparently.
    We invoke a EU investigation about this to get rid of this situation once for all.
    Thank you.

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