FlyArystan, Kazakhstan’s LCC, announces 13 new routes + new base
FlyArystan – Kazakstan’s first and so far only LCC – has announced 13 new routes.
Eight will be from Atyrau as a result of its new base there, in the far west of the vast country, while Shymkent will have four new routes and Karaganda three.
These new offerings, all domestic, follow four other routes disclosed earlier this month. These included Atyrau – Shymkent, which will now be doubled to four-weekly as a result of FlyArystan’s new Atyrau base.
Eight of these new routes are not served, indicating the importance of creating new markets for FlyArystan. This – and low fares to drive demand – appears to be one of FlyArystan’s core objectives within the Air Astana Group.
|Routing||Start date||Weekly frequency||Competition* (weekly frequency)|
|Atkobe – Karaganda||2 August||2||None|
|Atyrau – Aktau||15 July||7||SCAT (14), Qazaq Air (6)|
|Atyrau – Aktobe||16 July||4||Qazaq Air (7)|
|Atyrau – Almaty||18 July||2||Air Astana (11); SCAT (4)|
|Atyrau – Karaganda||15 July||3||None|
|Atyrau – Kostanay||16 July||2||None|
|Atyrau – Kyzylorda||17 July||2||None|
|Atyrau – Nur-Sultan||16 July||2||Air Astana (11), SCAT|
|Atyrau – Uralsk||15 July||2||Qazaq Air (4)|
|Shymkent – Karaganda||2 August||3||None|
|Shymkent – Kostanay||15 July||2||None|
|Shymkent – Pavlodar||1 August||2||None|
|Shymkent – Ust-Kamenogorsk||3 August||2||None|
|Soure: OAG Schedules Analyser and each airline’s website. *Based on the same week
as FlyArystan begins. Of course, frequencies may not reflect normal levels given
coronavirus, and they may change further.
Atyrau – Aktau = 367 kilometres: 12 hours+ overland or one-hour block by air
FlyArystan will offer a once-daily service between Atyrau and Aktau, with these two cities located just 367 kilometres apart – but a very long time by overland transport.
It is interesting to note that FlyArystan’s 180-seat A320s will compete with 50-seat CRJ-200s by SCAT and 78-seat Dash-8-400s by Qazaq Air. Clearly, this is unsustainable on the face of it.
However, SCAT’s timings enable day trips in both directions, presumably generating a sufficient yield advantage, while probably making Qazaq Air’s six-weekly offering most vulnerable.
But at least Atyrau – Aktau is short…
Most of the unserved routes haven’t been operated for at least 10 years, but exceptions exist.
Take Atyrau – Kyzylorda. This was last served by Bek Air in 2018 using Fokker 100s. Yet, Air Astana used to operate this 1,088-kilometre route until 2011 with Fokker 50s, with a block time of up to 3h 10m non-stop.
By contrast, Atyrau – Shymkent, a 1,485-kilometre sector, used to be operated until 2012 by SCAT AN-24s, with block times of 3h 20m. Now, it is operated by Qazaq Air’s Dash-8-400s, making it one of the world’s longest non-stop sectors by -400s.