New airline routes launched (14 – 20 June 2011)

Route of the Week:
Sunwing’s first Transatlantic flight YUL-Paris CDG

Sunwing’s first-ever Transatlantic flight YUL-CDG

Sunwing’s first-ever Transatlantic flight – YUL-CDG! Gary D. Ogden, Sunwing VP Commercial Operations, tells us: “The group shot at YUL Gate 58 is a true compilation of all those needed to launch the project.” Indeed the group includes Sunwing Vacations, Sunwing ground operations, Swissport, Servisair and Culinair agents, and representatives of the Sunwing customer service and marketing departments. Montreal Station Manager, Georgia Andrianopoulos (back row, far right) coordinated the on-time departure. There are also two senior executives in the picture – Sam Char, SVP & Executive Director of Vacances Sunwing (far right seated, in suit; no tie) and Gary himself (second from left standing in black suit; no tie).

Sunwing’s first-ever Transatlantic flight - YUL-CDG! Passengers had been treated to champagne and chocolate-covered strawberries, while being serenaded with French music. The Flight Crew were ‘clapped-in’ as they approached the gate by passengers and the Project Launch Team.

  • Sunwing Airlines, the Canadian leisure carrier, on 16 June entered the European market, launching seven routes across the Atlantic from both Montreal (YUL) and Toronto Pearson (YYZ). Flights are operated with 296-seat 767-300ER aircraft. Notably, all routes face competition from fellow Canadian leisure carrier Air Transat.
Origin Destination WF* Competition (WF*)
Montreal (YUL) Paris CDG (CDG) 2 Air France (20), Air Transat (15), Air Canada (13)
Toronto Pearson (YYZ) Amsterdam (AMS) 1 KLM (14), Air Transat (4), Arkefly (1)
Toronto Pearson (YYZ) Lisbon (LIS) 1 Air Transat (3), SATA (1)
Toronto Pearson (YYZ) London Gatwick (LGW) 4 Air Transat (10), Thomas Cook (2)
Toronto Pearson (YYZ) Paris CDG (CDG) 2 Air Canada (7), Air France (7), Air Transat (4)
Toronto Pearson (YYZ) Porto (OPO) 1 SATA (2), Air Transat (1)
Toronto Pearson (YYZ) Rome Fiumicino (FCO) 2 Alitalia (7), Air Canada (7), Air Transat (6)
*WF: Weekly Frequency

Cake of the Week:
London-Skopje by Wizz Air

The  London-Skopje Wizz cake features Big Ben and the Macedonian flag.

The London-Skopje Wizz cake features Big Ben and the Macedonian flag.

Wizz Air’s first service between the capitals of the UK and Macedonia for 10 years!

  • Wizz Air launched five new routes in the last week, including three from its new Romanian base at Targu Mures (TGM) in Transylvania, while the other two are from its Budapest (BUD) home in Hungary to Antalya (AYT) on Turkey’s Mediterranean south coast and between London Luton (LTN) and Macedonia’s capital Skopje (SKP). This is the first time Skopje has a London service since British Airways dropped its Gatwick route in 2001, while the route between Budapest and Antalya was last served by Corendon Airlines in 2008.
Date Origin Destination WF*
18-Jun-11 Budapest (BUD) Antalya (AYT) 2
19-Jun-11 London Luton (LTN) Skopje (SKP) 4
18-Jun-11 Targu Mures (TGM) Milan Bergamo (BGY) 3
18-Jun-11 Targu Mures (TGM) Barcelona (BCN) 3
19-Jun-11 Targu Mures (TGM) Madrid (MAD) 2
*WF: Weekly Frequency

The rest of this week’s new routes

  • Adria Airways, the national airline of Slovenia, continued expanding its new secondary base in Pristina (PRN) in Kosovo, launching two new seasonal services in the last week. On 18 June, the Star Alliance airline began operating once-weekly to Paris Charles de Gaulle (CDG), which is scheduled to operate until 17 September, and the following day, two weekly flights were launched to Brussels (BRU). The service to the Belgian capital, which is served until 29 September, competes with Jetairfly’s also two weekly flights that launched last week.
  • AeroMexico on 15 June launched a domestic service between Mexico City (MEX) and Huatulco (HUX), the resort city on the Pacific coast in the south of the country. Flights are operated daily with the SkyTeam carrier’s 99-seat E-190s. The route is already highly competitive with three airlines already operating. Interjet flies 18 times weekly, while Aeromar operates 14 and VivaAerobus five times a week.
  • Air Canada launched a seasonal domestic route between its Toronto Pearson (YYZ) hub and Gander (YQX) in Newfoundland. On 18 June, the Star Alliance airline began operating the 2,000-kilometre route with 93-seat E-190s. Flights will operate daily until 5 September, competing with Sunwing’s weekly service. Marcel Forget, Air Canada’s VP Network Planning, commented: “We are pleased to offer our customers direct non-stop Gander-Toronto service, to complement existing Gander services to Halifax, St. John’s, and Goose Bay. Travellers will enjoy the only non-stop service between Gander and our major hub Toronto with convenient connections throughout Canada, and the U.S.”
  • Air China launched its second route to Milan Malpensa (MXP) as the airline on 15 June connected the northern Italian airport with its Beijing (PEK) hub. Flights on the new route operate three times weekly, on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays, with A330-200 aircraft. The Star Alliance airline has in fact served the route in the past, between 1995 and 2005.
  • airberlin launched two new seasonal routes in the last week, both northbound to the Nordic countries. From Berlin Tegel (TXL), the airline on 18 June began flying once-weekly to the Danish island of Bornholm (RNN) off the coast of Sweden in the Baltic Sea. The holiday island is served until 27 August with Q400 aircraft. This is the first time the island is connected with Berlin since Lufthansa operated from 1992 to 1996. On 19 June, airberlin launched two weekly flights between Hamburg (HAM) and Reykjavik (KEF) in Iceland. Flights are interchangeably operated with 737-700 and A319 aircraft, competing with Lufthansa’s and Icelandair’s also each twice-weekly flights. The service is scheduled to operate until 18 August.

At Tokyo Narita, ANA’s new Chengdu route was celebrated with a panda theme, since Chengdu is famous for its conservation of the animal. The Japanese voice from Kung Fu Panda 2, Tatsuya Yamaguchi, joined the celebrations, which included the aircraft flying the route the first time having a livery advertising the film.

In Chengdu, the Japanese table tennis player Ai Fukuhara – an ANA spokesperson – spoke to the gathered press.

  • ANA All Nippon Airways added another Chinese destination to its network when the airline on 19 June launched a daily service between its Tokyo Narita (NRT) hub and Chengdu (CTU) in western China. The 3,425-kilometre route, which is the Japanese Star Alliance member’s 10th to Mainland China, is operated daily with 120-seat 737-700s. This is the first time the route is operated non-stop since Air China’s services in 2003-2004.

In Krasnodar in southern Russia, Avianova’s CEO Andrew Pyne opened the low-cost airline’s second physical base in cooperation with the airport operator Basel Aero. Flanking the airline CEO are Vladimir Konovalov, Managing Director Krasnodar Airport, and Zhanna Shalimova, Avianova's Marketing & Sales Director. (Photo copyright Leonid Faerberg)

  • Avianova reached two milestones in a single day as the Russian low-cost carrier launched four new routes on 15 June. One of the routes is notably the airline’s first international service and the other three the result of the opening of the airline’s second base. From its main base at Moscow Sheremetyevo (SVO), the airline now flies four times weekly – on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Sundays – to Simferopol (SIP) on Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula by the Black Sea. Direct competition on the popular international route comes from Aeroflot’s twice-daily and AeroSvit’s daily flights on the same route, while there is even further competition from the Moscow airports Vnukovo and Domodedovo by UTair, AeroSvit, Continent, S7, Ural Airlines and Transaero. The establishment of a base in Krasnodar (KRR) in southern Russia the same day resulted in three weekly flights to Yekaterinburg (SVX) and four flights a week on the short 190-kilometre route to Sochi (AER) on the Black Sea coast. The flights then continue three times a week, also adding a service between Sochi and Yekaterinburg. All four new routes are operated with Avianova’s single fleet of 170-seat A320s.
Origin Destination WF* Competition (WF*)
Moscow Sheremetyevo (SVO) Simferopol (SIP) 4 Aeroflot (14), AeroSvit (7)
Krasnodar (KRR) Ekaterinburg (SVX) 3 7R (7), Ural Airlines (2), Kuban Airlines (1)
Krasnodar (KRR) Sochi/Adler (AER) 4 Kuban Airlines (14), Continent (3)
Sochi/Adler (AER) Ekaterinburg (SVX) 3 Ural Airlines (6), Kuban Airlines (2)
*WF: Weekly Frequency
  • Azul, the Brazilian low-cost carrier, launched a new domestic route on 15 June. From its base at São Paulo Viracopos (VCP), the airline now operates to the northeastern city of Juazeiro do Norte (JDO). Flights operate daily with the airline’s 106-seat E-190s. This is the first time the city has a non-stop connection with a São Paulo airport since OceanAir’s operations in 2007-2008.
  • Beijing Capital Airlines, the Hainan Airlines subsidiary, on 13 June launched four weekly flights aboard 138-seat A319s between Xian (XIY) and Hangzhou (HGH). The airline faces considerable competition on the route, including from parent Hainan Airlines. China Eastern operates 27 times a week, while Hainan Airlines, Air China and Xiamen Airlines each operate twice-daily, and China Southern and Shenzhen Airlines each daily.

Shaking hands in Rome: Franco Pecci, chairman Blue Panorama Airlines; Giuseppe Scopelliti, president, Calabria Regional Government; and Giulio Maleci, CEO, Aeroporti di Roma...and later cutting the ribbon.

The celebration and aircraft Christening in Reggio Calabria: Franco Pecci, chairman Blue Panorama Airlines and Giuseppe Scopelliti, president, Calabria Regional Government.

  • Blu-Express, the Italian low-cost carrier, on 17 June launched domestic services to Reggio Calabria (REG) in the south of the peninsula. Flights now operate five times a week, daily on weekdays, from both Milan Linate (LIN) and Rome Fiumicino (FCO). From the capital city, competition comes from Alitalia’s 28, ItAli Airlines’ 14 and Air Malta’s three weekly flights, while the route from the city airport serving Italy’s second-largest city competes with Alitalia’s and ItAli’s each daily flights.
  • Carpatair, the Romanian regional carrier, on 15 June launched three weekly flights on Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays between the Black Sea resort city Constanta (CND) and Turkey’s Istanbul Atatürk (IST). The flights, which are operated with 50-seat Saab 2000 aircraft, reinstate a route that last was operated by Angel Airlines in 2002-2003 after it had been dropped by TAROM. This is the first time Carpatair operates to Turkey.

Celebrating the new route to Busan with the Cebu Pacific mascot were the airline’s Chief Executive Adviser Garry Kingshott, Chief Operations Adviser Mark Breen, Philippines’ CAA Deputy Director General for Operations Napoleon Garcia, Korean Ambassador to the Philippines Lee Hye Min, Department of Tourism Secretary Alberto Lim, and Cebu Pacific VP Commercial Planning Alex Reyes. The lucky first passenger, Jinwoo Shin, won a voucher for a free return flight.

  • Cebu Pacific, the Filipino low-cost carrier, added a new service to South Korea on 15 June as the airline connected Manila (MNL) with Busan (PUS) four times weekly. The Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday flights are operated with 180-seat A320s. Competition comes from Asiana’s daily and Philippine Airlines’ four weekly flights. “CEB offers the lowest fare from the Philippines to Busan, South Korea’s 2nd largest city. We are very optimistic about our Busan operations, especially since this is our fourth route to South Korea. We can see that the market for Cebu Pacific flights can really be stimulated by our trademark low fares,” said Cebu Pacific’s VP Marketing and Distribution Candice Iyog.

China Southern on 15 June launched its second route to North America, departing Guangzhou for Vancouver. The major new route received a big celebration, not the least because it also became the 100th international route to operate out of Guangzhou Baiyun Airport.

On arrival in Vancouver, the ribbon was cut by Tan Wan Geng, China Southern's General Manager, and Maxime Bernier, Canadian Foreign Minister (centre). Tan was also welcomed with his very own Vancouver Canucks ice hockey shirt by the minister.

  • China Southern continued expanding its international network out of its Guangzhou (CAN) hub, launching three weekly flights to Canada’s western city Vancouver (YVR) on 15 June. The SkyTeam carrier uses 284-seat 777-200ER aircraft on the route, which is to its second destination in North America after Los Angeles. This makes China Southern the third airline from Mainland China to serve Canada after Air China and China Eastern.
  • Comefly is a new virtual airline in Denmark, chartering 374-seat A330-200 aircraft from Monarch of the UK. From Aalborg (AAL) in northern Jutland, the Danish mainland, flights operate once-weekly across the Atlantic to Fort Myers (RSW) on Florida’s west coast.
  • Copa Airlines of Panama City (PTY) expanded with four new routes in the last week, both north and south of the airline’s hub where Central America meets South America. In Brazil, the airline now serves six destinations after the addition of the capital Brasilia (BSB) and Porto Alegre (POA) in the south of the country, while Bahamas and Canada are new country markets for the airline. Notably, the future Star Alliance member has alliance partners TAM in Brazil and Air Canada in Canada. Pedro Heilbron, Copa Airlines’ CEO, said: “Our new Toronto service demonstrates Panama’s continuing role as the focal point for business and tourism for the entire Latin American region. The Canadian market offers the potential for investments, export opportunities and tourism. We are very pleased to offer this new Toronto flight, part of Copa’s ambitious expansion plan.”
Date Destination WF* A/c
18-Jun-11 Brasilia (BSB) 4 B73G
15-Jun-11 Nassau (NAS) 4 E190
15-Jun-11 Porto Alegre (POA) 4 B73G
16-Jun-11 Toronto Pearson (YYZ) 4 B73G
*WF: Weekly Frequency

Croatia Airlines for the first time arrived in Serbia’s capital Belgrade with its Q400 aircraft. This summer, flights will operate twice a week from Dubrovnik. A press conference was held by Velimir Radosavljević, Belgrade Airport’s CEO; Željko Kuprešak, Croatian Ambassador to Serbia; and Srećko Šimunović, Croatia Airlines’ CEO.

  • Croatia Airlines on 20 June launched an historical route between the coastal city of Dubrovnik (DBV) and Serbia’s capital Belgrade (BEG). Flights operate twice-weekly, on Mondays and Wednesdays, with 76-seat Q400 aircraft, competing with Jat Airways’ also two weekly flights that also launched this week. The seasonal service is operated until 5 September. The route was last served until 1991 by then JAT and Adria Airways, then being a domestic service, but flights between Croatia and Serbia came to a halt as a result of the war following Croatia’s declaration of independence.
  • easyJet launched two new routes in the last week. From its Geneva (GVA) base in Switzerland, the low-cost airline added a seasonal route to the Greek island of Mykonos (JMK) on 15 June, operating until 17 September. This is the airline’s second Greek destination from Geneva after Heraklion on Crete. On 17 June, the airline also connected Manchester (MAN) in northern England with Bilbao (BIO) in Spain’s Basque Country. Flights operate three times a week. Both new routes are served with 156-seat A319s.
  • Egyptair launched two new routes to the Arabian Peninsula on 20 June. From Cairo (CAI), the airline now flies three times weekly to Abha (AHB) in Saudi Arabia with 104-seat 737-500s, competing with Saudi Arabian Airlines’ four flights a week. From Alexandria El Nouzha (ALY), the airline also launched a daily service to Dubai (DXB) with A320s. This is the airline’s second route to Dubai after its Cairo services. Indirect competition at Alexandria’s Borg El Arab comes from flydubai’s twice-daily service.
  • EVA Air of Taiwan on 18 June took on local rival China Airlines by launching flights between Taipei (TPE) and the US territory Guam (GUM), a distance of 2,780 kilometres. Flights operate twice-weekly with 252-seat A330-200 aircraft, competing with China Airlines’ four flights a week.
  • Firefly, Malaysia Airlines’ regional subsidiary, on 16 June connected Johor Bahru (JHB) on the Malacca Peninsula, near Singapore, with Kota Kinabalu (BKI) on the island of Borneo. Flights initially operate daily, but frequencies double on 1 August. Competition comes from AirAsia’s 18 flights a week.
  • Frontier Airlines on 20 June launched a daily service between its Denver, CO (DEN) base and Provo, UT (PVU). This is the Utah airport’s first scheduled commercial service since regional services ended in 1990. Flights are operated with 99-seat E-190s by Republic Airlines.
Ribbon Cutting Ceremony for Gulf Air’s new route to Afghanistan’s capital Kabul

The ribbon for Gulf Air’s new route to Afghanistan’s capital Kabul was cut by the airline’s CEO Samer Majali, Deputy CEO Maher Al Musallam and Undersecretary for Bahrain CAA Abdulrahman Al Gaoud, as the gentlemen were joined by senior management colleagues and representatives of Bahrain Airport Company, including CEO Gordon Dewar (left, behind Majali).

  • Gulf Air added its first destination in Afghanistan as the airline on 15 June launched four weekly flights between its Bahrain (BAH) base and Kabul (KBL) aboard 136-seat A320s. The airline’s CEO Samer Majali said: “The launching of our service to Kabul further demonstrates our strategy to connect the Kingdom of Bahrain with niche and under-served markets in the region that have high growth potential.”
  • Iberia on 19 June added its second route to Brazil’s largest city São Paulo (GRU) as the oneworld airline complemented its Madrid services with two weekly flights from Barcelona (BCN). Flights are operated with 254-seat A340-300s and compete with Singapore Airlines’ recently launched three weekly flights. Iberia reports that the inaugural flight had a 100% load factor and that this is expected to stay above 90% for the rest of the year.
  • Jat Airways was one of two airlines that this week launched the historical route between Serbia’s capital Belgrade (BEG) and the Croatian coastal city of Dubrovnik (DBV). Flights launched on 17 June and operate twice-weekly, on Fridays and Sundays, with 66-seat ATR72s, competing with Croatia Airlines’ also two weekly flights that also launched this week. The seasonal service is operated until 5 September. The airline last served the route until 1991 alongside Adria Airways, then being a domestic service, but flights between Croatia and Serbia came to a halt as a result of the war following Croatia’s declaration of independence.
  • jetBlue continued expanding its network to the Dominican Republic and on 17 June connected Boston, MA (BOS) with Santiago de los Caballeros (STI) in the north of the island, complementing the airline’s existing route there from New York JFK. Flights on the new route are operated three times weekly with 150-seat A320 aircraft.
  • Kingfisher Airlines, the Indian future member of oneworld, launched several new routes in the last week. On 15 June, the airline began operating between Mumbai (BOM) and Trivandrum (TRV) four times weekly with A320s. Competition comes from Air India’s, Jet Airways’ and IndiGo’s each daily flights, as well as Air India Express’ two flights a week. On 20 June, the airline also began operating one-way from Mumbai to Jabalpur (JLR), continuing one-way to Indore (IDR) and finally returning from there to Mumbai. The flights are operated daily with 144-seat A319s.

The cake welcoming Kuwait Airways to Istanbul was cut by dignitaries including TAV Istanbul’s General Manager Kemal Unlu and Kuwait Airways’ CEO Hamad A. Latif Al Falah. Meanwhile, passengers were greeted with flowers and Turkish delights.

  • Kuwait Airways on 16 June launched two new routes from its base at Kuwait City (KWI). The airline began operating three weekly flights to Medina (MED) in Saudi Arabia using 130-seat A320s, competing with Saudi Arabian Airlines’ two weekly flights and a weekly service on nasair. Kuwait Airways also launched three flights a week to Istanbul Atatürk (IST) with 232-seat A300-600 aircraft. Competition on the route comes from Turkish Airlines’ 10 weekly flights. TAV Istanbul’s General Manager Kemal Unlu said: “Kuwait is a country with which we not only have historical relations but ongoing cultural relations that have been developing gradually. Therefore, we are very happy with the direct flights Kuwait Airlines has started to our airports.”
  • Malev, the national airline of Hungary, on 17 June launched a seasonal charter service between Budapest (BUD) and the Greek island of Corfu (CFU). Flights operate three times weekly with 737-800s until 26 September.
  • Medallion Air, a Romanian airline that is new to scheduled operations, on 16 June launched a domestic service between Constanta (CND) on the Black Sea coast and Cluj Napoca (CLJ) in Transylvania. Flights are initially operated once-weekly, but frequencies in mid-July increase to being operated two times per week. The airline uses MD83 aircraft on the route that was most recently operated by Tarom last year.
Saudi carrier Nasair’s inaugural flight from Riyadh

Saudi carrier Nasair’s inaugural flight from Riyadh gets the traditional fire truck salute on arrival at Istanbul Sabiha Gökçen.

  • nasair, the Saudi low-cost carrier, on 18 June launched three new routes. From each of its bases at Riyadh (RUH) and Jeddah (JED), the airline now flies to Karachi (KHI) in Pakistan. The two daily routes are the airline’s first routes to the country, however, both Saudi Arabian Airlines and Pakistan International Airlines compete on both routes, with four and two weekly flights respectively from Riyadh and nine and five flights from Jeddah. nasair’s flights on this route are operated with 180-seat A320 aircraft. From Riyadh, the airline also began serving its third Turkish airport: Istanbul Sabiha Gökçen (SAW). The four weekly flights are served with 132-seat A319 aircraft, competing indirectly with Turkish Airlines’ 10 and Saudi Arabian Airlines’ three weekly flights to/from Istanbul Atatürk.
  • niki, the Austrian airline affiliated with airberlin, continued expanding its services to Shannon (SNN) in Ireland. As of 18 June, the airline flies once a week from Vienna (VIE) with its A320 series aircraft. Flights operate seasonally until 3 September.
  • Norwegian, the fast-growing pan-Nordic low-cost carrier, on 20 June began operating internationally from Gothenburg Landvetter (GOT) as the airline launched three weekly flights to Spain’s Malaga (AGP) with its 737-800s. Competition comes from City Airline’s two weekly flights on the same route. Although not a physical base yet, Norwegian is currently launching several routes from Gothenburg that are operated from the airline’s physical base at Stockholm Arlanda.
  • Pegasus Airlines on 17 June added another German destination as the Turkish low-cost carrier launched two weekly flights from its Istanbul Sabiha Gökçen (SAW) base to Zweibrücken (ZQW) near the French border. This is the seventh German city that the airline serves. The route is operated with 189-seat 737-800s.

The first Venetians arrive in Doha: Andrea Ferrari, Italy’s Ambassador Qatar; Enrico Marchi, Chairman, Venice Marco Polo International Airport; Akbar Al Baker, CEO, Qatar Airways; Giorgio Orsoni, Mayor of Venice; Luciana Lamorgese, Prefect of Venice; and His Excellency Sultan Saad Al Moraikhi. (Later Enrico Marchi presents the traditional gift to the Qatar Airways CEO on behalf of Venice Marco Polo.)

  • Qatar Airways on 15 June launched flights to its third Italian destination after Rome and Milan. The airline’s Doha (DOH) hub is now connected with Venice (VCE) with daily flights aboard 144-seat A320s. The airline’s CEO Akbar Al Baker commented on the 4,150-kilometre route: “Venice Airport and local authorities have been very supportive, recognising the benefits the new Qatar Airways service will bring to the travelling public in Italy and businesses of the Veneto region.”

Pula Airport welcomed Ryanair’s Brussels Charleroi route with a complete celebration; fire-truck salute, ribbon-cutting, cake, welcoming majorettes and snacks and refreshments. Cutting the ribbon was the airport’s GM & CEO Bruno Rogović, while the chairman Valerio Drandić cut the cake with Ryanair’s captain.

  • Ryanair added its third route to the Croatian coastal city of Pula (PUY) on the Istria Peninsula on 20 June, as the airline began operating twice-weekly from Belgium’s Brussels Charleroi (CRL).
S7 inaugural flight from Novosibirsk

Andreas Ley, Berlin Airports’ Airline Marketing (centre), welcomed the S7 crew after the inaugural flight from Novosibirsk. He was joined by Garri Ostrovski, PUL Express (right), who represents the airline. This is the first time the Siberian city is connected with the German capital.

  • S7, the Russian oneworld member, added a route to its fifth German destination on 19 June when the airline connected its Novosibirsk (OVB) base in Siberia with Germany’s capital – for the first time connecting the two cities. Notably, Berlin Tegel (TXL) is the home of future alliance partner airberlin. The route is operated once a week with 158-seat A320 aircraft.
  • Safi Airways, the international Afghan airline, on 16 June launched a new route from its Kabul (KBL) base to Delhi (DEL) in India. Flights operate four times weekly with 144-seat A320 aircraft, competing with daily flights on Pamair and Kam Air, Air India’s six flights a week and Ariana Afghan Airlines’ three weekly services.
  • Sichuan Airlines launched a new international route on 17 June, connecting Nanning (NNG) in southern China with Indonesia’s capital Jakarta (CGK). Flights operate twice a week with 150-seat A320 aircraft. This is the airline’s first route to Indonesia, but not the first time Jakarta is connected with Nanning. From 2007 until last year, the same route was operated by Shenzhen Airlines.
  • Sky Wings, the Greek carrier with Ukrainian minority shareholding, on 14 June launched a service between the capitals of Greece and the Ukraine; Athens (ATH) and Kiev Zhulyany (IEV). The flights initially operate three times a week, but this increases to four times on 18 July. Flights are operated with Avro RJ200s and indirectly compete with AeroSvit’s six flights a week from Kiev’s main airport Borispol.
  • SpiceJet launched three domestic Indian routes on 17 January, each operating daily with the low-cost airline’s 189-seat 737-800s. All routes face considerable competition from network carriers.
Origin Destination Competition (WF*)
Chennai (MAA) Vizag (VTZ) Kingfisher (7), Jet Airways (7), Air India (6)
Delhi (DEL) Jaipur (JAI) Kingfisher (28), Jet Airways (13), Air India (1)
Hyderabad (HYD) Pune (PNQ) Jet Airways (21), Kingfisher (7), Air India (6)
*WF: Weekly Frequency
Vietnam Airlines new route between Kaohsiung and Hanoi

Le Thanh Dung, Vietnam Airlines’ GM Taiwan (centre), celebrated the SkyTeam airline’s new route between Kaohsiung and Hanoi with his employees at the airline’s mid-year party. Vietnam Airlines already serves Kaohsiung from Ho Chi Minh City.

  • Vietnam Airlines launched two international intra-Asian routes in the last week out of its base in the country capital Hanoi (HAN). On 16 June, the SkyTeam airline launched a daily service to the capital of Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur (KUL), the next day followed by three weekly flights being launched to Kaohsiung (KHH) in southwest Taiwan. The airline already serves both destinations from Ho Chi Minh City. Both new routes are operated with 184-seat A321 aircraft. The Kuala Lumpur service competes with Malaysia Airlines’ and AirAsia’s also daily flights, while UNI Air also operates three times weekly between Kaohsiung and Hanoi.

Other celebrations in the last week

Today, Thai Airways International announced that it will launch three weekly flights to Brussels in November, using 292-seat 777-200ER aircraft. At the IATA Schedules Conference in Gothenburg, Maarten Evenepoel, Manager Aviation Marketing at Brussels Airport, and Nungnoj Ratanavichai, Director Network Development at Thai, celebrated the major announcement. Notably, Brussels is a Star Alliance hub, providing Thai with connections with its alliance parters.

Today, Thai Airways International announced that it will launch three weekly flights to Brussels in November, using 292-seat 777-200ER aircraft. At the IATA Schedules Conference in Gothenburg, Maarten Evenepoel, Manager Aviation Marketing at Brussels Airport, and Nongnuj Ratanavichai, Director Network Development at Thai, celebrated the major announcement. Notably, Brussels is a Star Alliance hub, providing Thai with connections with its alliance parters.

Wizz Air celebrated 8 million passengers at London Luton Airport and the winner – Andrew Jackson who was flying home to Budapest – won a voucher for two free flights, which was handed over by the airport’s Airlines Manager Simon Harley. Harley was also joined by his colleague Oliver Jaycock and Ildikó Czerván, Wizz Air’s Airport Development Manager, in celebrating the milestone.

airBaltic celebrated reaching one million flights sold on its website

airBaltic, the Latvian national carrier, celebrated reaching one million flights sold on its website this year by congratulating Zane Jaunbelzēja (centre) who travelled to Milan with her family. Wishing the passengers an enjoyable flight was the airline’s VP Corporate Communications Janis Vanags.


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