Ryanair finally announces first Polish base in Wrocław and negotiates for major Modlin/Warsaw announcement
Ryanair this week finally announced its first base in Poland, the biggest and most populous of the countries which joined the EU in May 2004. Over the years Ryanair has repeatedly complained about the air navigation charges in the country as a reason for not committing to basing aircraft in the country, but despite that it has built up a portfolio of over 70 international routes making it the third biggest airline in the Polish market after national carrier LOT and Wizz Air.
|Airline||Frequency share||Capacity share||Polish routes*|
|LOT Polish Airlines||46.2%||33.7%||84|
|Source: OAG Max Online for w/c 3 October 2011
* Domestic routes are counted twice, once from each airport on the route
Ryanair offers flights from nine airports in Poland, though the country’s biggest airport at Warsaw is notably not one of them. However, the airline is in active discussions with the operators of the new Modlin airport which will serve the Warsaw catchment area when it opens for business some time next summer. Krakow is by far the airline’s biggest base of operations with over 10 daily flights spread across 21 destinations. Wrocław, the airport chosen by Ryanair to be its first Polish base ranks second with 42 weekly departures to 14 destinations (a 15th route to Rome Ciampino re-launches at the end of the month).
Wrocław ranks fifth in Poland with 1.65 million pax in 2010
Wrocław airport is the fifth busiest in Poland and handled 1.65 million passengers last year, up 21% on 2009. A decade earlier the airport was handling just over 200,000 annual passengers. Ryanair started serving the airport from London Stansted in March 2005, followed by a further seven routes in 2006, two in 2007, five in 2008, two in 2009 and three in 2010. Ryanair’s current network of routes from Wrocław is summarised in the following table by country market.
|Country||Airport served (Start date, current weekly frequency)|
|Belgium||Brussels Charleroi (27 Oct 08, 2)|
|Ireland||Dublin (5 Apr 06, 4), Shannon (22 Feb 06, 2)|
|Italy||Bologna (30 Mar 10, 2), Milan Bergamo (31 Oct 06, 2), Rome Ciampino (27 Oct 09*)|
|Norway||Oslo Rygge (30 Mar 10, 3)|
|Spain||Alicante (4 Jun 09, 2), Girona (31 Oct 07, 2), Malaga (25 Jun 10, 2)|
|UK||Bristol (7 Nov 07, 2), East Midlands (8 Feb 06, 4), Glasgow Prestwick (1 Aug 06, 3), Liverpool (3 Oct 06, 3), London Stansted (24 Mar 05, 9)|
|Source: anna.aero LCC history database, OAG Max Online for w/c 3 October 2011
* Re-starts 30 October 2011
Routes that have operated in the past are Bournemouth, Edinburgh, Frankfurt Hahn, Stockholm Skavsta, and Weeze (near Düsseldorf).
Six new routes starting in March; Bournemouth returns
The airline has announced that as a result of basing a single 737-800 at Wrocław it will launch six new routes from the airport. These are Bournemouth (UK), Chania (Greece), Malmö (Sweden), Malta, Paris Beauvais (France) and Venice Treviso (Italy). All of these airports are already served by Ryanair from a variety of its other bases across Europe.