New airline routes launched
(21 December 2010 – 3 January 2011)

Route of the Week:
Indonesia AirAsia’s Denpasar/Bali to Darwin

The 4 am arrival of Indonesia AirAsia’s aircraft in Darwin followed earlier ‘Christmas celebrations’ for the new route. Ian Kew, CEO Northern Territory Airports, welcomed Indonesia AirAsia to Darwin with Widijastoro Nugroho, the airline’s marketing & distribution director, who drew a lucky prize winner with Jim Parashos, Northern Territory Airports’ director airline & airport services.

Arriving passengers on Indonesia AirAsia’s first flight from Darwin to Denpasar were given a traditional Balinese welcome; garlands (flower necklaces).

  • Indonesia AirAsia launched its second Australian destination on 23 December as it launched daily flights between Denpasar (DPS) on the island of Bali and Darwin (DRW) in northern Australia. The Northern Territory airport joins Perth, which the airline also serves from the Indonesian island. The A320 operator competes on the new route with fellow low-cost carrier Jetstar, which flies the route 11 times a week.

Cake of the Week:
China Airlines’ Taipei to Auckland via Brisbane

With this amazing globe cake of the Taipei 101 and Auckland’s Sky Tower to celebrate China Airlines’ return to New Zealand, Auckland Airport won us over. Simon Moutter, CEO Auckland Airport, led the celebrations with representatives from the airline. After the ribbon was cut to inaugurate the route, boarding passengers were given goody bags by the airline dignitaries.

In Taipei, the ribbon for the new route was cut by Michelle Slade

In Taipei, the ribbon for the new route was cut by Michelle Slade, director of the New Zealand Commerce and Industry Office; Sun Huang-Hsiang, president of China Airlines; Wei Shengzhi, deputy GM of Taipei Taoyuan Airport; and Yang Qilin, Deputy Chief Officer of Taoyuan Airport Police Station.

  • China Airlines on 1 January returned to the New Zealand market as it launched three weekly flights to Auckland (AKL) from its Taipei (TPE) hub, operating via Brisbane (BNE) in Australia on Tuesdays, Fridays and Sundays. The Taiwanese airline last served Auckland, and New Zealand, with flights operating via Sydney back in March 2000 to October 2001. Flights will now be operated with 313-seat A330-300s. Glenn Wedlock, Auckland Airport’s GM aeronautical business development, said: “Taiwan is a high growth potential market for New Zealand, and has recently benefited from a change in visa policy that has enabled easier travel by Taiwanese to New Zealand, which has had a positive impact on arrival numbers.”

The rest of this week’s new routes

  • Air Arabia expanded its Egyptian network as it launched a service between its Sharjah (SHJ) base in the United Arab Emirates and the new airport in Sohag (HMB) in central Egypt on 26 December. The three weekly flights with the low-cost airline’s 162-seat A320s add to its existing Egyptian services to Alexandria, Luxor and Assiut.
  • Air Canada launched three winter sun routes over the Christmas period, each operating once a week. From Montreal (YUL), the Star Alliance airline serves Cozumel (CZM) in Mexico with its A319 aircraft as of 23 December. Ottawa (YOW) got two new routes on Christmas Day itself, 25 December. The airline’s 93-seat E-190 aircraft now operate to both Punta Cana (PUJ) in the Dominican Republic and Varadero (VRA) in Cuba. The Dominican service competes with WestJet’s also weekly flight. Both routes were previously served by the now defunct Skyservice.
Air Macau was welcomed to Singapore Changi Airport by the airport group’s EVP Air Hub Development, Yam Kum Weng, who exchanged gifts with Air Macau’s VP Commercial, Yang Jianhua.

Air Macau was welcomed to Singapore Changi Airport by the airport group’s EVP Air Hub Development, Yam Kum Weng, who exchanged gifts with Air Macau’s VP Commercial, Yang Jianhua.

  • Air Macau on 3 January began operating a scheduled service between Macau (MFM) and Singapore (SIN). The route previously operated as a charter. 178-seat A321s are operated on the route that competes with both Singaporean low-cost carriers Tiger Airways and Jetstar Asia, which fly daily and five times weekly respectively.
Celebrating bmibaby’s move to Belfast City

Celebrating bmibaby’s move to Belfast City was Peter Dickson, native of Dundonald, Northern Ireland and famous as a voiceover talent from the TV show X-Factor. Peter has recorded some on board announcements for bmibaby that will be played on flights to and from Belfast City Airport and he also joined a flight to entertain the passengers live on board.

  • bmibaby on 1 January moved its operations from Belfast International to Belfast City (BHD). All four routes are domestic services to England and Wales that all compete with flybe.
Origin WF* Competition (WF*)
Birmingham (BHX) 14 flybe (28)
Cardiff (CWL) 4 flybe (7)
East Midlands (EMA) 17 flybe (12)
Manchester (MAN) 13 flybe (34)
*WF: Weekly Frequency
  • Bulgaria Air on 28 December launched a weekly service between its Sofia (SOF) base and St Petersburg (LED). Bulgaria Air’s 737-300 aircraft are used on the route that the airline previously has operated during the summer peak season only; then in competition with Rossiya.
  • Cape Air expanded its network out of San Juan (SJU) in Puerto Rico as it added a service to Anguilla (AXA), the British Caribbean island 315 kilometres away, on 22 December. Flights will operate twice-daily with 9-seat Cessna 402 aircraft. Initially, competition will come from American Eagle’s four weekly ATR72 flights, but these are to be suspended from April.
  • CityJet, the Air France regional subsidiary, on 22 December launched a new service out of London City (LCY). The airline now serves Florence (FLR), initially three times weekly, but from 10 January six times a week. At 1,200 kilometres, the 95-seat Avro RJ85 service to the Tuscan airport is by far the airline’s longest from London City.
  • Delta launched two Japanese routes on 22 December. From Honolulu (HNL), the airline now serves Nagoya (NGO). The daily 767 service faces JAL’s also daily flights with the same aircraft type. From Tokyo Narita (NRT), the airline also began serving Koror (ROR) in Palau, the Pacific island nation previously under US administration. Flights operate four times weekly with 757 aircraft. Although charters operate between the two airports, this is the first time they are connected with a scheduled service.
Bangalore Airport welcomed Etihad’s thrilled crew with flowers and goody bags as the airline launched its eighth Indian destination. The four weekly flights will increase to daily at the end of March.

Bangalore Airport welcomed Etihad’s thrilled crew with flowers and goody bags as the airline launched its eighth Indian destination. The four weekly flights will increase to daily at the end of March.

  • Etihad on 1 January launched its eighth Indian destination as it connected its Abu Dhabi (AUH) hub with Bengaluru (BLR), previously known as Bangalore. Flights operate four times weekly with 140-seat A320s. At the start of the summer season, frequencies will increase to daily. Neerja Bhatia, Etihad’s country manager India, commented: “India is a hugely important market for Etihad – in fact, we operate to more destinations in India than any other country.”
  • Jet2.com launched three ski routes between the UK and the Alps, each operating once weekly.
Date Origin Destination WF*
21-Dec-10 Edinburgh (EDI) Salzburg (SZG) 1
21-Dec-10 Manchester (MAN) Salzburg (SZG) 1
26-Dec-10 Newcastle (NCL) Geneva (GVA) 1
*WF: Weekly Frequency
Paul Donovan, COO Gold Coast Airport, travelled on the first flight to Hobart Airport where he met with the Tasmanian Devil. In Hobart was also a group of prize winners about to depart on the first flight back to the sunny Gold Coast.

Paul Donovan, COO Gold Coast Airport, travelled on the first flight to Hobart Airport where he met with the Tasmanian Devil. In Hobart was also a group of prize winners about to depart on the first flight back to the sunny Gold Coast.

Jetstar’s new route between Melbourne and Ballina coincided with the delivery of the airline’s 50th A320 family aircraft, which this crew, headed by Captain Joshua Hocking and Cabin Manager Paul Wensor, was proud to fly.

Jetstar’s new route between Melbourne and Ballina coincided with the delivery of the airline’s 50th A320 family aircraft, which this crew, headed by Captain Joshua Hocking and Cabin Manager Paul Wensor, was proud to fly.

  • Jetstar launched two domestic Australian routes just before Christmas, using its 177-seat A320s. On 21 December, Melbourne (MEL) became connected with Ballina (BNK) in northernmost New South Wales four times weekly, while nearby Gold Coast (OOL) got a daily service to Hobart (HBA) in southern Tasmania the next day. Neither route faces competition.
  • Kingfisher Airlines expanded its domestic network and launched a service between Delhi (DEL) and Bhubaneswar (BBI) on 21 December. The airline already serves the eastern Indian city, capital of the state of Odisha, from Kolkata, Mumbai and Bengaluru. The new route operates twice a day and competes with IndiGo’s also two daily serves and one daily flight on Indian Airlines.
  • Spring Airlines launched its second route to Hong Kong (HKG) on 23 December when the airline added three weekly flights from Shijiazhuang (SJW) 250 kilometres south of Beijing. The low-cost A320 operator already serves Hong Kong from Shanghai Pudong. The new service will operate in competition with China Eastern’s two weekly flights.
  • Sun Country Airlines launched five new winter sun routes out of Lansing, MI (LAN) with its 737-800s over the Christmas period, as detailed in our dedicated article this week. The two international destinations, Cancun (CUN) in Mexico and Montego Bay (MBJ) in Jamaica, has the highest and lowest frequencies assigned respectively.
Date Destination WF*
22-Dec-10 Cancun (CUN) 4
23-Dec-10 Fort Myers, FL (RSW) 3
23-Dec-10 Las Vegas, NV (LAS) 2
26-Dec-10 Montego Bay (MBJ) 1
22-Dec-10 Orlando, FL (MCO) 2
*WF: Weekly Frequency
  • Transavia.com on 26 December launched a ski route out of Billund (BLL). The airport on the Danish mainland will be connected with Salzburg (SZG) once a week with 737-700 aircraft. During part of the season, Cimber Sterling’s also weekly flights on the route compete.

Shafiq Alam Mehedi, the Bangladeshi Civil Aviation and Tourism Secretary, was given an aircraft model by Sezgin Saglam, Turkish Airlines’ SVP Marketing and Sales, to celebrate the new route to Dhaka. Both Bangladesh and Vietnam were new country markets for Turkish Airlines launched over the Christmas period.

  • Turkish Airlines, the airline analysed in this week’s issue, entered two new country markets – Bangladesh and Vietnam – over the Christmas period, as the airline launched two new stopping services out of its Istanbul Atatürk (IST) hub. On 26 December, four weekly flights to Dhaka (DAC) began, operating via Karachi (KHI). On 29 December, they were followed by also four weekly flights via Bangkok (BKK) to Ho Chi Minh City (SGN) using 271-seat A340-300 aircraft.
  • VIM Airlines, the Moscow Domodedovo (DME) based Russian airline, launched a weekly ski route to Basel (BSL) on 2 January. 220-seat 757-200s are used on the route, which was last served by Transaero in 2007-2008.
  • Wind Jet launched a weekly flight between its Catania (CTA) home base in Sicily and Sharm El-Sheikh (SSH) in Egypt on 26 December. Flights are operated with A320 aircraft and complement the airline’s route to the same destination from Forlì, launched a week earlier.
  • Yamal Airlines relaunched a route from the city of Tyumen (TJM) in the Russian Urals to Prague (PRG). After UTair’s flights to Munich, this is the second route from Tyumen outside the CIS. Flights operate once a week with 737-500 aircraft. The airline first launched the route in December 2008, but dropped it in June last year.

Comments

  1. Arun says:

    Indigo Airlines (6E) launched a number of new routes on Jan 2nd. The new routes were from Delhi(DEL) to Kochi(COK) and Trivandrum (TRV) and between TRV and Chennai (MAA). All these routes are daily services on A320.

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