New routes launched during the last week (Tuesday 13 July – Monday 19 July):

Route of the Week:
Cathay Pacific’s Hong Kong to Moscow Domodedovo

Cathay Pacific’s Director Corporate Affairs Quince Chong receives a warm welcome upon arrival at Moscow Domodedovo with the traditional Russian “Bread & Salt” greeting, before handing over an A340-300 model to the airport director Vyacheslav Nekrasov to commemorate the new service.

  • Cathay Pacific becomes the next airline to take on the previous Aeroflot monopoly on the Hong Kong-Moscow city pair. After Hong Kong Airlines’ launch of flights to Moscow Sheremetyevo, the oneworld member launched three weekly flights from Hong Kong (HKG) to Moscow Domodedovo (DME). The new service will be operated with 283-seat A340-300s. At the end of the month, Transaero will also enter the route. Cathay Pacific’s Director Corporate Affairs, Quince Chong, said: “We have long recognised the huge potential associated with Russia. The new service underscores our long-term commitment to growing our already extensive network, offering quality services to our customers, and helping to boost the status of Hong Kong as Asia’s premier aviation hub.”

Cake of the Week:
flybe’s London Gatwick to Nantes

In Nantes, the new flybe service to London Gatwick – competing with easyJet – was celebrated with an interesting take on a cake. Inside the decorated box were multi-coloured bite-size cakes. A notable detail is the biscuit on the edge of the beautifully crafted coffee cup – a 'petit beurre', typical to Nantes.

  • flybe has launched 10 new routes with its Q400 fleet in the last week, of which eight are between the UK and France and the remaining two are domestic UK services from Guernsey (GCI) in the Channel Islands. The only route to face competition is between London Gatwick (LGW) and Nantes (NTE), which is served daily by easyJet. Notably, the Birmingham (BHX) to Perpignan (PGF) route used to be operated by Ryanair, but was dropped at the end of the last summer season. The services from Manchester (MAN) to Bergerac (EGC) and Limoges (LIG) are resumptions, having been operated by flybe in the summer of 2007.
Date Origin Destination WF*
13-Jul-10 Birmingham (BHX) Bordeaux (BOD) 4
13-Jul-10 Birmingham (BHX) Perpignan (PGF) 3
13-Jul-10 Birmingham (BHX) Rennes (RNS) 3
13-Jul-10 Guernsey (GCI) Edinburgh (EDI) 3
13-Jul-10 London Gatwick (LGW) Limoges (LIG) 3
13-Jul-10 Manchester (MAN) Bergerac (EGC) 3
14-Jul-10 Guernsey (GCI) Belfast City (BHD) 1
14-Jul-10 Manchester (MAN) Avignon (AVN) 2
15-Jul-10 London Gatwick (LGW) Nantes (NTE) 6
17-Jul-10 Manchester (MAN) Limoges (LIG) 3
*WF: Weekly Frequencies

This week’s other route launches

Adria’s arrival at Banja Luka was a major event for the Bosnian airport, drawing large crowds to witness the first flight and celebrate. Cakes and fruits were served, but there were regrettably no pictures of these.

  • Adria Airways expanded its Bosnian network as it added flights to Banja Luka (BNX), the main city in the Republika Srpska part of the country. The airline will operate flights four times a week – on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays – from its Ljubljana (LJU) hub, using CRJ200s. This makes the Slovenian Star Alliance member the only scheduled airline to serve Banja Luka, which was left unserved since B&H Airlines dropped its Zurich route in March this year.

Afriqiyah’s new service between Tripoli and Lyon was given a traditional welcome upon arrival at the French airport. Mohamed Shawani, Afriqiyah’s area manager, joined the airline’s CEO, Rammah B. Ettir, to mark the occasion.

  • Afriqiyah Airways of Libya launched two services in the last week using its fleet of 142-seat A319s. On 15 July, the airline launched four weekly flights to Lyon (LYS) from its Tripoli (TIP) hub. Three days later, the airline launched a link to Milan Malpensa (MXP). The three weekly flights to the commercial capital of Libya’s former colonial power compete with two flights a week on fellow state-owned carrier Libyan Airlines. Both routes are Afriqiyah’s second in each country, where it already serves the capital cities; Paris CDG and Rome Fiumicino.
  • Air Vallée, which recently resurrected in Rimini (RMI), launched two flights a week to Belgrade (BEG) on 17 July. Flights will operate with the airline’s Dornier 328JET aircraft.
  • airberlin launched a weekly service between Zurich (ZRH) and Rimini (RMI) on 18 July. Flights will operate with Q400 aircraft. The last time the route was operated was in 2006, when Helvetic served the two airports.
  • Alitalia launched three seasonal, Mediterranean routes out of Milan Malpensa (MXP) on 19 July. Olbia (OLB) in Sardinia as well as Palma de Mallorca (PMI) and Ibiza (IBZ) in the Balearic Islands will each be served daily with A320 aircraft until 12 September. All three flights are operated by the airline’s subsidiary Air One. The Olbia service competes with easyJet’s 23 flights a week as well as two weekly flights each on Lufthansa Italia and Meridiana. The Palma route faces easyJet’s 11 weekly flights, while the new Ibiza service is up against easyJet 21 times a week, Vueling daily, Lufthansa’s four weekly flights as well as a weekly service on Meridiana.

American Eagle arrived into Cheyenne on a beautiful 15 July. The inaugural flight brought 37 passengers to Cheyenne, while 25 people joined the return to Dallas.

  • American Airlines launched a new service from Dallas/Fort Worth, TX (DFW) to Cheyenne, WY (CYS), a distance of 1,150 kilometres, on 15 July. Flights will operate twice a day with American Eagle’s 44-seat ERJ-140 aircraft. This is the first major airline to serve Cheyenne since United dropped its Denver service in 2002. Currently, the only other scheduled operator at the airport is Great Lakes Aviation, which offers commuter services to Denver, CO and Worland, WY.
  • Azerbaijan Airlines launched a seasonal service between Baku (GYD) and Prague (PRG) on 15 July. The A319 service will operate on a weekly basis until 16 September. The last time the two airports were connected was in 2006, when CSA dropped the route and Imair only operated one summer season’s flights.

The new China Eastern route was celebrated in Yantai, which now has a connection to both the domestic destination Hohhot and the South Korean ‘honeymoon island’ of Jeju.

  • China Eastern launched two flights a week between Hohhot (HET) in the Chinese region of Inner Mongolia and Jeju (CJU), the South Korean island located southwest of the mainland. Flights operate via Yantai (YNT) on the Shandong Peninsula with 737-300 aircraft.

For China Southern’s first flight to Bole, the airline used a 737-700 instead of the scheduled ATR72s. The arrival of the airline, which provides onward connections from Ürümqi, called for big celebrations. The airline’s regional VP Xinjiang, Zhang Sheng, spoke to the invited guests, while curious members of the public gathered outside the airport to catch a glimpse of the major event.

  • China Southern launched a new route from Ürümqi (URC) in northwest China to Bole (BPL), 500 kilometres further east, near the border to Kazakhstan, on 15 July. Flights will operate daily with ATR72s.
  • Continental Micronesia launched a seasonal, daily service between its Guam (GUM) base and Tokyo Haneda (HND) on 16 July. Flights will operate on charter basis with 737-800s until 26 September, complementing the airline’s four daily flights to Tokyo Narita. Matt Miller, Continental Airlines’ MD Asia-Pacific, commented: “It gives me great pleasure to offer additional non-stop charter service between Tokyo and Guam from the convenience of Haneda Airport, something our customers value as part of their travel experience.”

To celebrate the launch of the three new easyJet flights from Bristol, a selection of Turkish and Greek food was laid on for easyJet passengers at check in on Friday. The Turley Family, Louise, Charley (3), Steve and Cleo (5), celebrated with easyJet’s UK Commercial Manager Sophie Dekkers (centre). Although they travelled to Amsterdam, the Plymouth Argyle football team took the opportunity to have a free pre-match meal before a friendly match against NAC Breda.

  • easyJet launched three new routes from Bristol (BRS) in southwest England to the eastern Mediterranean with its 156-seat A319s. The Turkish destinations of Dalaman (DLM) and Bodrum (BJV), launched on 16 and 17 July respectively, will each be served three times a week, while Heraklion (HER) in Crete, which launched on 17 July, is served twice weekly.
Baha Al Deen M. Mohammad

Baha Al Deen M. Mohammad, the Iraqi Vice Commercial Attaché in Dubai, and Abdhulhadi Othman Mohammed, Commercial Attaché, met flydubai’s CCO Hamad Obaidalla to inaugurate the new route from Dubai to Erbil.

  • flydubai continued its network growth by adding its first Iraqi destination; Erbil (EBL) in the northern, Kurdish part of the country. Flights will operate twice a week, on Mondays and Fridays, from the airline’s Dubai (DXB) base, having started on 16 July. flydubai’s CEO, Ghaith Al Ghaith, said: “In 2009, the UAE was the top foreign investor in Iraq and according to reports, the UAE is set to double investment in Iraqi Kurdistan to around AED22 billion in the next three years. flydubai’s new service will not only help to strengthen the relationship between our two nations but will also give the many Iraqi expatriates living in the UAE another affordable, quality air travel alternative to visit friends and family back home.”

The opening of the airport in Tangshan was a major event for the whole region. Mayor Chen Ying presided over the opening ceremony, which was richly decorated with flowers.

Hainan Airlines’ first service from the brand-new airport to Guangzhou was the natural continuation of the celebrations. Two flights a week will connect the airport with Guangzhou.

  • Hainan Airlines launched a new route from Guangzhou (CAN) to the brand-new airport in Tangshan (TVS), located 150 kilometres east of Beijing, on 13 July. Flights will operate twice a week, on Tuesdays and Saturdays, using 737-800s. The former military airfield is now a joint military and civilian airport, after over three years’ work on the redevelopment.
  • Hamburg International launched a service between Cologne/Bonn (CGN) and Fuerteventura (FUE) in the Canary Islands on 19 July. Flights will operate once a week with A319s until 25 October, competing with two weekly flights each on airberlin and Condor as well as TUIfly’s one flight a week.
  • Iberia continued its Middle Eastern expansion on 13 July. Having launched services to Amman ten days earlier, the Spanish airline now also connects Madrid (MAD) with Damascus (DAM) in Syria. The seasonal flights will operate once a week until 26 October. The A319 services compete with Syrian Air’s two weekly flights.
  • Malaysia Airlines began serving Bandung (BDO) in Indonesia, 120 kilometres southeast of Jakarta, on 16 July. Its daily 737-400 flights from Kuala Lumpur (KUL) will compete with Indonesia AirAsia’s three flights a day on the same route.
  • Mandala Airlines, the Indonesian low-cost carrier, continued its international expansion by launching four weekly flights between Jakarta (CGK) and Hong Kong (HKG) on 19 July. This follows the airline’s launch of Singapore services at the end of June. The route is already served twice a day by Cathay Pacific as well as daily by both Garuda Indonesia and China Airlines.
  • SAT Airlines launched a new route within the Russian island of Sakhalin, near Japan. From its Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk (UUS) base in the south of the island, it began flying to Shakhtyorsk (EKS) on Sakhalin’s west coast on 13 July. Flights operate twice a week with Dash-8-300s.
  • Syrian Air began serving the Turkish coastal city of Antalya (AYT) on 18 July. Two weekly ATR72 flights, on Wednesdays and Sundays, now operate from its Damascus (DAM) base, competing with Turkish Airlines’ also two flights a week.
  • TACA expanded its US network out of Guatemala City (GUA), when it in the last week launched three weekly flights to Orlando, FL (MCO) with 96-seat E-190s. Flights operate from Orlando on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays, with the first flight having taken place on 16 July, and return from Guatemala City to the Florida destination on the following morning. This is the airline’s second Florida destination from Guatemala City, after Miami.
  • Turkish Airlines was the next airline in line to begin serving Ghana. From its Istanbul Atatürk (IST) hub, the airline will add Accra (ACC) as an extension to its Lagos service. Flights will operate four times a week, on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, with 271-seat A340-300s.

Previous weeks’ route launches

vivaaerobus’s flights between Monterrey and Tuxtla Gutiérrez

vivaaerobus’s flights between Monterrey and Tuxtla Gutiérrez, which launched on 1 July, were celebrated with traditional folk dance, music and vivid colours.

vivaaerobus’s arrival to Houston on 2 July was only a day delayed by the hurricane that hit Monterrey. Still, nothing could stop the airline and airport from celebrating with a gorgeous cake.

AtlasJet of Turkey

AtlasJet of Turkey launched its Istanbul to Dubrovnik route on 24 June and will serve the Croatian coastal city twice a week until 12 September.

Other celebrations in the last week

Ryanair, which began serving Turin in 1999, on 16 July celebrated reaching two million passengers at the northwest Italian airport. Maurizio Montagnese, president of Turin Airport, and Giulia Gambacciani, Ryanair’s sales and marketing executive for Italy, celebrated with the lucky passengers - a Belgian couple from the Brussels area.

Ryanair, which began serving Turin in 1999, on 16 July celebrated reaching two million passengers at the northwest Italian airport. Maurizio Montagnese, president of Turin Airport, and Giulia Gambacciani, Ryanair’s sales and marketing executive for Italy, celebrated with the lucky passengers - a Belgian couple from the Brussels area.


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