New Alitalia celebrates 1st birthday; 21 million passengers in 2009 across 73 destinations

This week saw the first anniversary of the launch last January of the ‘new Alitalia’, the airline created by private investors out of bits of the old Alitalia, Air One and Volareweb. According to statistics provided by AEA, between 13 January 2009 and the end of November the new airline carried just over 19.6 million passengers at an average load factor of 65.4%. The load factor figure compares poorly with major legacy carrier rivals such as Air France (78.8%), British Airways (78.2%), Iberia (79.9%), KLM (81.4%), Lufthansa (77.9%) and even SAS (71.7%).

Chart: ‘New’ Alitalia in 2009 - Monthly passengers and load factor
Source: AEA

For 2009 as a whole it looks likely that the airline will have carried around 21 million passengers using a fleet of almost 150 aircraft across a network comprising of some 73 airports. The fleet currently consists of two A330s, 10 777s and six 767s for long-haul flights, over 80 A320 series aircraft, a dozen 737s (from Air One), and almost 20 MD-82s which are being rapidly phased out. In addition there is a ‘regional’ fleet comprising 10 CRJ-900s (from Air One CityLiner) and six Embraer E170s (from Alitalia Express). In future, the airline plans to operate additional A320s (to replace the MD-82s), A330s (replacing the 767s) and even A350s (though these are not expected to enter service before 2014).

Four destinations dropped and four added during 2009

According to OAG data, since re-launching last January Alitalia has axed services to four European destinations while adding services to four others. The axed airports were Dűsseldorf (from 30 June), Krakow, Prague (from 28 March) and Timisoara while the new additions to the network were Berlin (Tegel), Crotone, Thessaloniki and Valencia. The airline’s global network as operated this month remains at 73 destinations (of which 51 are in Europe) although new routes from Rome starting this summer will see the addition of Los Angeles, Malaga and Vienna to the network. Other possible new destinations from Rome this summer include Berlin Tegel, a return to Prague, Seoul Incheon, Shanghai Pu Dong, Rio de Janeiro and Zurich.

That still leaves quite a few major European cities not currently served including Copenhagen, Dublin, Dűsseldorf, Helsinki, Lisbon, Lyon, Manchester, Oslo and Stockholm. A number of other destinations served by the ‘old’ Alitalia are summarised in our previous analysis of the ‘new Alitalia’. Outside of Europe the airline currently serves 22 destinations.

Region Destinations served
Africa & Middle East Accra, Algiers, Beirut, Cairo, Casablanca, Damascus, Lagos, Tehran, Tripoli, Tel Aviv, Tunis
Americas Boston, Buenos Aires, Caracas, Chicago O’Hare, Miami, Newark, New York JFK, Sao Paulo, Toronto
Asia Osaka Kansai, Tokyo Narita
Source: OAG Max Online for w/c 1 February 2010

Several new routes from Bologna, Catania and Linate

A year-on-year comparison reveals that Alitalia has cut frequencies at six of its busiest 12 airports while increasing flights at five others (Bari remains unchanged). Double-digit percentage increases have occurred at Bologna, Catania and Milan Linate.

Chart: Alitalia’s top 12 airports - Weekly departures
Source: OAG Max Online for w/c 2 February 2009 and w/c 1 February 2010

At Bologna the airline has added new daily flights to Catania and Palermo (both in Sicily), while Catania has seen the addition of new services to Genoa and Venice as well as Bologna. From Linate Alitalia has added flights to Bucharest Otopeni, Crotone and Paris Orly, though Athens and Warsaw services were axed last September.
The biggest cutbacks have continued to be felt at Milan Malpensa where weekly flights have been halved from 260 to 130 per week, making the airport just the seventh busiest in the airline’s revamped network.

Few international routes outside of Rome and Milan

Turin has recently seen the launch of several new routes on Alitalia. On 19 December 2009, the airline began flying twice-weekly to Moscow Sheremetyevo. The route was welcomed by Tommaso Fumelli, Alitalia’s GM Russia/Ukraine/Belarus. Thanks to Tatiana Alekseeva for providing these photos.

Rome Fiumicino is the airline’s dominant international hub but it does offer a range of international services from both Milan airports. This winter saw the launch of all four of the international routes currently available from Turin.

Airport International routes
Milan Linate Amsterdam, Barcelona, Bucharest Otopeni, Brussels, Frankfurt, London City, London Heathrow, Madrid, Paris CDG, Paris Orly,
Milan Malpensa Algiers, Cairo, Istanbul, Kiev, Moscow Sheremetyevo, New York JFK, Sao Paulo, Sofia, Tel Aviv, Tirana, Tokyo Narita, Tripoli, Tunis
Naples Athens
Turin Amsterdam, Berlin Tegel, Istanbul, Moscow Sheremetyevo
Source: OAG Max Online for w/c 1 February 2009

As Alitalia evolves will continue to track its network changes and its performance compared with other European flag carriers.


  1. marcelo caetano says:

    The taste of NEW Alitalia will come AFTER the last MD80 flight. replies: Which will be when?

  2. Simon says:

    Looks like Milan-Miami replaces Milan-Sao Paulo in June.

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