New routes launched in the Americas (5 July – 1 August 2011)


The arrival of AeroMexico called for major celebrations in Brownsville. This is the airport’s first international route since the 1990s. Airport Director Larry Brown cut the ribbon and spoke to the gathered media.

  • AeroMexico expanded its network with two new routes across the border to the US in the last week. On 15 July, the SkyTeam airline began flying twice a week, on Fridays and Sundays, between Monterrey (MTY) in northeastern Mexico and Brownsville, TX (BRO) just across the US border. The 270-kilometre route is operated seasonally until 21 August with 50-seat ERJ145 aircraft. Brownsville is notably the gateway to the resort city South Padre Island. The following day, AeroMexico launched daily flights between Guadalajara (GDL) and Sacramento, CA (SMF), competing with Alaska Airlines’ three flights a week on the route. This is AeroMexico’s fifth California route from Guadalajara after Los Angeles, Fresno, Ontario and San Francisco.

Route of the Week: (5 – 11 July 2011)
Caribbean Airlines’ Port of Spain to Orlando

Caribbean Airlines’ acting CEO Robert Corbie saw off the passengers departing Port of Spain on the first flight to Orlando. In the Florida city, the flight’s captain – VP Operations Thomas Lawrence – cut the welcome cake with Cesar Calvet, Chairman, Greater Orlando Aviation Authority. Speaking at the event organised at the Hyatt Regency was Teresa Jacobs, Mayor of Orange County, flanked by Phil Brown, Executive Director, Greater Orlando Aviation Authority; Calvet; Laura Asbjornsen, Caribbean Airlines’ Head Corporate Communications; and Lawrence.

  • Caribbean Airlines for the first time connected the capital of Trinidad & Tobago, Port of Spain (POS) with Orlando, FL (MCO) as the airline on 5 July added its third Florida destination after Miami and Fort Lauderdale. The service is operated twice-weekly, on Tuesdays and Fridays, during the summer season with 154-seat 737-800s. Cesar E. Calvet, Chairman of the Greater Orlando Aviation Authority, said: “The arrival of Caribbean Airlines and its connections to tropical getaways is great news. It furthers our plans as an airport and as a community to cultivate and connect to markets that have historically been under served. This is good business for Orlando International and the 35 million people we serve and is good business for all of Central Florida.”

August 1, 2011: The re-introduction of Delta (SkyWest) services between Oakland and Los Angeles, with five daily flights. Oakland’s Aviation Marketing Manager John Albrecht tells anna.aero: “The plane did leave 100% full – 30 passengers connecting to other Delta services in the US and Mexico and 20 travelling to the ‘local’ SF Bay-LA Basin. A good time was had by all! Delta, through its processor Western Airlines, has been serving the sunnyside of the San Francisco Bay at OAK since 1946. We're thrilled that they have re-commenced the service to LA to compliment their existing service to Salt Lake City.” The happy Delta Air Lines ladies at OAK’s Gate 15 for this first flight are Michelle Niksich, Teresa Schroeder and Jonelle Booze-Johnson.

  • Delta Air Lines entered the intra-California route between Los Angeles (LAX) and Oakland (OAK), the airport in the San Francisco Bay Area analysed this week, on 1 August. Complementing the airline’s 75 weekly flights to SFO, the SkyTeam carrier now flies 35 times a week to Oakland. Flights are operated by SkyWest with 50-seat CRJ200 aircraft. Competition comes from Southwest’s 92 weekly flights on the route. Joe Esposito, Delta’s Managing Director Domestic Network Planning, commented: “Oakland is one of the top local markets from Los Angeles, and Delta’s new service adds travel choices for our customers traveling between these key West Coast cities. In addition, Oakland customers will enjoy access to Delta’s international gateway in Los Angeles, with convenient connections on Delta and our SkyTeam partner carriers to cities across Europe, Asia and Latin America.”

Route of the Week: (12 – 18 July 2011)
Hawaiian Airlines’ Honolulu to Osaka Kansai

Passengers departing Honolulu on Hawaiian Airlines’ first flight to Osaka were presented fresh flower leis to the sound of Hawaiian music. The 767-300ER then arrived at the characteristic Kansai Airport artificial island.

The Hawaiian theme continued traditional Hawaiian music and dancing livened up the check-in area at Osaka Kansai. As passengers checked-in, they were greeted with leis.

In an event at the gate, Shinichi Fukushima, president of Kansai International Airport Co., received a Hawaiian Airlines aircraft model from the airline’s president and CEO Mark Dunkerley. The flight was then traditionally blessed by a Hawaiian priest.

Celebrating that Hawaiian Airlines’ new route to Osaka Kansai won our Route of the Week was the Japanese airport’s proud marketing team: (back row) Takahiro Ozeki, Director Airline Marketing & Promotion; Masato Kubota, Assistant Director; Takashi Yoshimura, Assistant Director; Takahiro Deo, Assistant Director; and (front row) Kanako Kinoshita, Assistant Director; Takanori Isaka, Assistant Director; Midori Kitagawa, Assistant Director; Satoko Ito, Assistant Director.

Celebrating that Hawaiian Airlines’ new route to Osaka Kansai won our Route of the Week was the Japanese airport’s proud marketing team: (back row) Takahiro Ozeki, Director Airline Marketing & Promotion; Masato Kubota, Assistant Director; Takashi Yoshimura, Assistant Director; Takahiro Deo, Assistant Director; and (front row) Kanako Kinoshita, Assistant Director; Takanori Isaka, Assistant Director; Midori Kitagawa, Assistant Director; Satoko Ito, Assistant Director.

  • Hawaiian Airlines on 12 July continued its trans-Pacific expansion and launched a daily service between its Honolulu, HI (HNL) base and Osaka Kansai (KIX). Competition on the route comes from Delta and JAL, each of which also operates the route daily. Flights on the 6,625-kilometre route operate with 264-seat 767-300ER aircraft, but these are to be replaced with 294-seat A330-200s. This is the airline’s second Japanese route after the Tokyo Haneda flights launched in November last year. Notably, the airline just increased capacity on the Haneda route by shifting to larger Airbus aircraft. Mark Dunkerley, Hawaiian’s president and CEO, said: “Demand for our services in Japan has returned to pre-tsunami levels, and we are grateful for the enthusiastic response we are receiving from the people of Osaka. This new daily service reflects our confidence in the Japan market and in the important Kansai region in particular.”

Insel Air was welcomed to Venezuela’s capital Caracas with a gorgeous cake. Present at the event were InselAir’s Chief International and General Affairs Edward Heerenveen, Chairman Henry van der Kwast and CEO Albert Kluijver. Heerenveen then spoke about the historic relationship between Venezuela and Curacao.

  • Insel Air continued expanding its network out of Curacao (CUR) in the Caribbean on 18 July, launching flights to its third destination in Venezuela; the country capital Caracas (CCS). Flights on the 280-kilometre route operate four times weekly with 152-seat MD83 aircraft, competing with Dutch Antilles Express’ 12 weekly flights as well as each twice-weekly flights with Avior Airlines and Aserca Airlines.

Upon arrival at Port of Spain’s Piarco International Airport in Trinidad, representatives from the Barbados Tourism Authority, Ministry of Tourism, shareholders and the REDjet family were met by the management of the airport authority. Passengers on the return flight to Barbados were given a warm welcome courtesy of the Barbados Tourism Authority. In keeping with the festive Crop Over season, an indigenous Barbadian Tuk Band and costumed ladies posed with airline CEO and chairman Ian Burns and a Trinidadian passenger at the arrivals hall.

  • REDjet, the Caribbean start-up low-cost airline that has had regulatory problems in gaining access to other markets than its first, on 1 August launched its second route. From its Bridgetown (BGI) base in Barbados, the airline now flies four times weekly to Port of Spain (POS), the capital of Trinidad & Tobago, using its 149-seat MD82 aircraft. Competition comes from Caribbean Airlines’ 28 and LIAT’s 14 weekly flights. Officially, the route launches on 8 August, but the airline has scheduled a number of flights before this date due to the increased demand caused by the Crop Over festival and Rihanna’s Loud concert.

Cutting the ribbon for SeaPort Airlines’ two new routes from Boise were the airline’s owner Rob McKinney, Boise Mayor Dave Bieter, and Boise Metro Chamber CEO/Airport Commissioner Bill Connors. A cake was baked to welcome the first passengers. With the help of the airline’s marketing coordinator Claire James, McKinney then drew the lucky winner of two round-trip tickets.

  • SeaPort Airlines, the US regional airline operating 9-seat Pilatus PC-12 aircraft, launched two new routes from Boise, ID (BOI) on 18 July. The airline now flies 22 times weekly – four times daily on weekdays and twice on Sundays – to Idaho Falls, ID (IDA), a distance of 335 kilometres east. The same day, SeaPort also launched a route to Pendleton, OR (PDT), 315 kilometres to the northwest. That service operates three times weekly.

The arrival of the Mexican low-cost carrier Volaris in San Diego was celebrated with the airline’s trademark plaque. Joining the crew were Robert Gleason, Chairman San Diego County Regional Airport Authority; Thella Bowens, CEO San Diego Intl Airport; and Enrique Baltranena, CEO Volaris. While passengers were treated with cupcakes decorated with flags, Maria de los Remedios Gómez Arnau, Mexican Consul General in San Diego, spoke to the gathered press. Seen seated are Baltranena and Jerry Sanders, Mayor of San Diego.

  • Volaris added flights to its fifth Californian airport on 15 July when the Mexican low-cost airline launched flights to San Diego, CA (SAN) from both Mexico City (MEX) and Guadalajara (GDL). Each of the two routes is operated daily with 144-seat A319s. The airline to last have operated these two routes is AeroMexico, which dropped Mexico City services in 2008 and Guadalajara flights in 2000.

Officials from Las Vegas McCarran International and the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority held a welcoming ceremony for Volaris’ first flight from Mexico City. Showgirls and Elvis were on hand to welcome arriving passengers and airline officials. The new service complements the low-cost carrier’s existing route from Guadalajara.

Officials from Las Vegas McCarran International and the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority held a welcoming ceremony for Volaris’ first flight from Mexico City. Showgirls and Elvis were on hand to welcome arriving passengers and airline officials. The new service complements the low-cost carrier’s existing route from Guadalajara.

Volaris’ CEO Enrique Beltranena got the honour of cutting the cake as the Mexican low-cost airline added a further – sixth – route to Los Angeles, this time from Mexico City. (Photos: Jay Berkowitz/LAWA)

  • Volaris continued its expansion to the US on 28 July when the low-cost carrier connected Mexico City (MEX) with both Las Vegas, NV (LAS) and Los Angeles, CA (LAX). Each route is operated daily with 144-seat A319s. This is the airline’s second route to Las Vegas after Guadalajara services, whereas the carrier already serves LA from five other Mexican airports. Competition to ‘Sin City’ comes from AeroMexico’s 14 weekly flights, while the Los Angeles route faces AeroMexico’s 27, United’s 21 and Alaska Airlines’ 14 flights a week.

Another celebration in the last month

ANA on 26 July celebrated 25 years on the route between Tokyo Narita and Washington Dulles. Having launched the link between the capitals in 1986 as a thrice-weekly 747-200 service, flights are now operated daily with 777-300ER aircraft. River City Taiko Drummers from Richmond, VA entertained in the terminal, passengers were treated with cupcakes and the airline’s SVP The Americas Satoru Fujiki handed out goody-bags to celebrate the milestone. (Photos: J. David Buerk, MWAA)


New route? New airline? Email us! Let's all celebrate your new routes. Please send photos and route details to James Davis, anna.aero's Assistant Editor. Contact James.

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