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bmi regional network still evolving; eight of 19 routes this summer are new having dropped seven routes since last summer

Bern baby Bern! On 14 January bmi regional revealed that it would be launching three new feeder routes for Lufthansa at Munich, starting at the end of March. Bern in Switzerland, Liege in Belgium and Rotterdam in the Netherlands would each be served with multiple daily flights using the airline’s fleet of 18 small Embraer jets. bmi regional’s network has grown in total by just one route this summer (from 18 to 19), but that disguises the fact that seven routes have been dropped while eight have been added.

Since bmi regional re-launched itself as an independent airline at the start of the W12/13 season, it has not been afraid to take tough decisions regarding its route network. If services have failed to deliver a satisfactory financial return the airline has been unafraid to drop them. As a result, according to anna.aero’s analysis of the airline’s schedules for the last 30 months, it has operated or put on sale a total of 43 routes, of which just 19 will be flown this summer.

Compared with last summer, the airline’s network has grown modestly from 18 to 19 routes. However, the number of weekly flights operated has jumped by 38% from 278 to 384. Of the 19 routes served this summer eight were not served last summer, while seven routes that were operated in S14 are no longer part of the airline’s network.

New for S15 Operated in S14 but not in S15
Bristol – Düsseldorf Aberdeen – Kristiansund
Bristol – Nantes Berlin Tegel – Kalmar
Bristol – Paris CDG Birmingham – Gothenburg
Frankfurt – Jonkoping Frankfurt – Karlstad (now operated via Jonkoping)
Jonkoping – Karlstad Gothenburg – Kalmar
Munich – Bern Gothenburg – Stavanger
Munich – Liege Manchester – Aberdeen
Munich – Rotterdem
Source: anna.aero’s New Route Database.

Among the routes no longer served this summer are the airline’s last remaining routes from both Birmingham (to Gothenburg, ending 27 March 2015) and Manchester (to Aberdeen, ending 27 March 2015). At one point bmi regional served Billund, Lyon and Toulouse from Birmingham, while its Manchester services previously included Antwerp, Edinburgh and Lyon. The Berlin-Kalmar and Gothenburg-Stavanger routes ended earlier this week on 1 March.

19 routes for S15; top 6 all from either Bristol or Munich

Looking at the latest schedule data for S15, the airline is planning to operate 19 routes of which 13 will be operated with at least two flights per day on weekdays, with reduced frequencies at weekends. The top six routes now all feature either Bristol or Munich. Apart from these 13 routes, the airline’s remaining scheduled services this summer are; Aberdeen-Esbjerg (six weekly flights), Aberdeen-Oslo (six weekly flights), Bristol-Düsseldorf (six weekly flights), Bristol-Milan Malpensa (four weekly flights), Bremen-Toulouse (twice-weekly flights) and Bristol-Nantes (twice-weekly flights).

Chart -  bmi regional's top 13 routes in S15 Weekly departures in August 2015

Source: OAG Schedules Analyser for w/c 10 August 2015.

According to the airline’s website its current fleet comprises four 37-seat Embraer ERJ-135s, and 14 49-seat Embraer ERJ-145s. Assuming the airline did not have a fuel hedging strategy in place, it will be very happy with the recent drop in fuel prices which will considerably help its financial position. According to the latest UK CAA statistics bmi regional transported 37,177 passengers in November 2014 at a load factor of 56.8%. Of these 25,840 were on scheduled services (at a load factor of 52.0%), highlighting that the airline operates a significant number of non-scheduled services.


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