Air France’s latest network strategy sees creation of HOP!, growth at transavia.com France, and axing of 29 routes
This week we take a closer look at which routes Air France has deemed surplus to requirements during the last 12 months. This is not as easy as it sounds, as the airline has recently created HOP!, a new regional subsidiary that merges the operations of Airlinair, Brit Air and Régional, into a single, more cohesive brand identity. Most of HOP!’s routes were previously operated with Air France (AF) as the “marketing airline”, but are now operated under HOP!’s own code (A5), with Air France codesharing. In some other cases, Air France has transferred routes (such as Lyon – Tunis and Nantes – Ajaccio) to its low-cost subsidiary transavia.com France (TO).
Taking these factors into account, anna.aero has identified 29 routes, previously operated with an AF code, which now appear to have been axed from the Air France Group network. These include a couple previously operated by Air France subsidiary CityJet, which is not part of HOP!, and which is currently for sale. Most of the routes are intra-European, but a few long-haul destinations such as Jeddah and Orlando have also been targeted for cuts.
|From||To||WF in S12||Last Operated||Currently operated by|
|Antwerp* (ANR)||Manchester (MAN)||6||16 September 2012||bmi regional|
|Bordeaux (BOD)||Malaga (AGP)||1||01 September 2012||Volotea|
|London City* (LCY)||Eindhoven (EIN)||6||28 March 2013||–|
|Lyon (LYS)||Amsterdam (AMS)||21||03 September 2012||KLM|
|Marseille (MRS)||Barcelona (BCN)||2||02 September 2012||Vueling|
|Marseille (MRS)||Düsseldorf (DUS)||3||01 September 2012||–|
|Marseille (MRS)||Hamburg (HAM)||4||27 October 2012||–|
|Marseille (MRS)||Milan Malpensa (MXP)||11||30 March 2013||Air Corsica|
|Metz (ETZ)||Figari (FSC)||1||29 September 2012||–|
|Montpellier (MPL)||Deauville (DOL)||1||15 September 2012||–|
|Montpellier (MPL)||Rennes (RNS)||1||01 September 2012||–|
|Nantes (NTE)||Bastia (BIA)||1||29 September 2012||Volotea|
|Nantes (NTE)||Clermont-Ferrand (CFE)||1||31 August 2012||–|
|Paris CDG (CDG)||Belgrade (BEG)||7||03 March 2013||Jat Airways|
|Paris CDG (CDG)||Fort-de-France (FDF)||1||11 May 2013||XL Airways France|
|Paris CDG (CDG)||Jeddah (JED)||3||01 September 2012||Saudia Airlines|
|Paris CDG (CDG)||Orlando (MCO)||3||02 September 2012||–|
|Paris CDG (CDG)||Pointe-a-Pitre (PTP)||1||12 May 2013||XL Airways France|
|Paris CDG (CDG)||Strasbourg (SXB)||28||01 April 2013||–|
|Paris Orly (ORY)||Figari (FSC)||24||29 March 2013||Air Corsica|
|Pau (PUF)||Amsterdam (AMS)||2||26 October 2012||–|
|Pau (PUF)||Dublin (DUB)||1||01 October 2012||–|
|Strasbourg (SXB)||Biarritz (BIQ)||2||05 January 2013||–|
|Toulouse (TLS)||Milan Malpensa (MXP)||2||31 August 2012||easyJet|
|Toulouse (TLS)||Vienna (VIE)||4||27 October 2012||–|
|Source: Analysis of Innovata / Diio Mi data for w/c 12 August 2013 and w/c 13 August 2012
* Operated by CityJet
In addition to dropping the above 25 European originating routes, Air France has also dropped a number of additional routes that were ‘add-ons’. These are Conakry (Guinea) – Freetown (Sierra Leone); Conakry (Guinea) – Monrovia (Liberia); Jeddah (Saudi Arabia) – Djibouti (Djibouti); and Pointe-a-Pitre (Guadeloupe) – Punta Cana (Dominican Republic).
It is also worth noting that some of the European routes were, in effect, handed over to partner airlines, such as Lyon – Amsterdam (to KLM), as well as Paris Orly – Figari, and Marseille – Milan Malpensa (both to Air Corsica).
CDG – Strasbourg axing helps stimulate direct traffic
The biggest route to be completely dropped is that between Paris CDG and Strasbourg, which last operated on 1 April this year. Despite this route representing 13% of Strasbourg’s traffic in 2012, the latest traffic figures from the airport (for April) show that passenger numbers are up 15%, thanks primarily to a 42% increase in passengers to other French airports.
Regional services brought under new HOP! brand
The creation of HOP! at the start of the summer 2013 season, with its own website (www.hop.fr) and booking tool, has created some apparent anomalies when analysing airline schedule data. By ‘handing over’ many of its regional routes to HOP!, Air France appears to have shrunk considerably. However, once HOP! services, and those of Air France’s own low-cost subsidiary transavia.com France are included, the decline in Air France related flights is down less than 5% during the peak summer season, while seat capacity is down less than 4%. Meanwhile ASKs (Available Seat-Kilometres) are actually up almost 1%.
|August 2012||August 2013||Change|
|Air France* flights||8,833||7,293||-17.4%|
|Air France* seats||1,293,831||1,154,367||-10.8%|
|transavia.com France flights||274||368||+34.3%|
|transavia.com France seats||49,484||67,995||+37.4%|
|Source: Diio Mi / Innovata for w/c 13 August 2012 and w/c 12 August 2013
* Includes Airlinair, Brit Air and Régional in August 2012, and CityJet in both August 2012 and August 2013
The rapid growth of transavia.com France’s capacity this summer, reflects the airline’s wider route network, which now includes serving leisure destinations from not just Paris Orly, but also Lille, Lyon and Nantes. But transavia.com France’s network has seen its own cuts, with the termination of flights from Paris Orly to Fuerteventura, Granada, Izmir, Palma de Mallorca and Tenerife Sur.