Routes In Brief: December's Rolling Daily Updates

Credit: Getty Images/Caroline Purser

Welcome to our rolling daily coverage of new routes announced during December 2021 alongside services that are scheduled to resume.

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Wizz Air Queen Alia.jpg
Credit: Queen Alia International

Queen Alia International (AMM) in Amman, Jordan, received its first Wizz Air flight from Milan Malpensa (MXP) on Dec. 18. The Hungarian ULCC will connect Amman to four European cities, starting with MXP and Budapest (BUD) this month. Service to Rome (FCO) and Vienna (VIE) is scheduled to begin in March. Wizz signed an agreement to launch the routes in October. Jordan Tourism Board hopes the eight new routes will further stimulate the nation’s tourism sector, bringing about 167,000 additional travelers into the country during the first year of operation.

Flyr is adding two new leisure routes from Oslo (OSL) next summer. A 3X-weekly route to Palma de Mallorca will start on March 29 followed by a 2X-weekly service to Zadar (ZAD) on April 9.

UK leisure airline is adding capacity to sun destinations in Greece, Cyprus and Malta from Newcastle (NCL) and Bristol (BRS) airports during the 2022 summer season. From Newcastle, the carrier plans to operate a new Tuesday service to Kefalonia (EFL) from July 26 through Aug. 30, meaning the route will be operated 2X-weekly. Zante (ZTH) and Corfu (CFU) will also receive an extra flight on Wednesday and Monday respectively, taking the routes to 4X-weekly. The changes are also from late July until late August. From Bristol, a new route to Malta (MLA) starts on May 31 through Oct. 25 operating once a week on Tuesdays, while a weekly Thursday service is being added to Kefalonia, increasing service to 2X-weekly from May 26 through Sept. 22. Finally, Jet2 plans to offer a second weekly flight to Larnaca (LCA) and a third to Rhodes (RHO) between late May and late October.

Spanish carrier Air Nostrum, which operates regional flights on behalf of Iberia, has launched scheduled flights between Andorra-La Seu d'Urgell (LEU) and Madrid (MAD) after being awarded a tender by the Government of Andorra. Service began on Dec. 17 and will operate twice a week using ATR 72-600s.

Ukraine’s SkyUp Airlines intends to open six new routes from Lviv (LWO), Kharkiv (HRK) and Zaporizhzhia (OZH). The additions are part of the LCC’s summer program, which expects to include flights to 30 countries on more than 100 routes. From March 28, 2022, the carrier will serve Lviv-Madrid (MAD) weekly, increasing to 2X-weekly in June. Lviv-Vienna (VIE) and Lviv-Valencia (VLC) will each begin on April 22 and be 2X-weekly, while a weekly Zaporizhzhia-Rhodes (RHO) service starts on May 27. Two more routes will launch on May 28, connecting Lviv and Thessaloniki (SKG) and Kharkiv and Corfu (CFU). Both services will be 2X-weekly.

Air Dolomiti will operate a 3X-daily route between Innsbruck (INN) and Frankfurt (FRA) from May 2. According to the Austrian airport, flights will depart INN at 6.35 a.m., 10.40 a.m. and 2.35 p.m. The return services leave FRA at 8.55 a.m., 12. 40 p.m. and 9 p.m.

Dec. 17

UK carrier easyJet is returning to London Southend (SEN) next summer with routes to two Spanish vacation destinations. Flights to Palma de Mallorca (PMI) are scheduled to start on May 1, 2022, operating four times a week. Service to Malaga (AGP begins a day later with six weekly flights. The routes will come as a welcome boost for Southend, which has been left without any scheduled commercial flights during the winter 2021/22 season. “The prospect of flights to these hugely popular destinations from our quick and easy airport will greatly benefit us, the airline and people living in London and the east of England,” SEN CEO Glyn Jones said. The Southend services are among 16 new routes that easyJet has added to its summer network today. Other flights new for next year include 1X-weekly services from Liverpool (LPL) to both Izmir (ADB) in Turkey and Heraklion (HER) in Crete, starting June 1 and 2 respectively.

Icelandair is launching a new seasonal service from its hub in Reykjavik (KEF) to Raleigh-Durham (RDU0 in the US state of North Carolina. The route will be served 4X-weekly from May 12, 2022 on Tuesday, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays using a 160-seat Boeing 737MAX 8. “This exciting announcement signals that demand for international travel is increasing as we head into the new year and a new phase of recovery,” said Michael Landguth, president and CEO of the Raleigh-Durham Airport Authority. “Icelandair will help meet that growing demand by offering leisure and business travelers nonstop service to a new destination and global connections to major cities on both sides of the Atlantic.”

Singapore Airlines will restart Airbus A380 flights to New York John F Kennedy (JFK) from March 27, 2022. The route will operate from Singapore (SIN) via Frankfurt (FRA). “After nearly two years of restrictions, we are seeing tremendous demand for international travel, and that includes premium cabins,” said Joey Seow, regional VP – Americas for Singapore Airlines.

Transavia France has resumed flights between Lyon (LYS) and Budapest (BUD). The route restarted on Dec. 16 and will be offered twice a week through Jan. 2, targeting leisure traffic over the upcoming vacation period. Transavia’s link to Lyon is another step towards our goal of reconnection and redevelopment, our ambition to once again offer a rich variety of destinations to our customers,” BUD head of airline development Balázs Bogáts said.

Dec. 16

Credit: Eastern Airways

UK regional airline Eastern Airways launched its inaugural Cornwall Newquay (NQY)-London Gatwick (LGW) service on Dec. 15. The government-backed public service obligation route was operated using ATR 72-600 turboprop aircraft, fuelled with sustainable aviation fuel supplied by Air bp. Flights will increase to a day return frequency Monday to Friday from Jan. 17, bolstered by twice-daily service on Sundays from Feb. 12. From the end of March, Eastern will also offer twice-daily Saturday services. “Cornwall Newquay Airport has worked tirelessly this year to restore lost regional services with several airlines stepping up to take on routes, as only our resilient sector can,” said Eastern Airways MD Adam Wheatley (pictured, left). “London was the vital, missing piece in the jigsaw of connectivity.”

Oman’s SalamAir is to launch routes from Muscat (MCT) to Bishkek (FRU) and Osh (OSS), marking the airline’s entry to the Kyrgyzstan market. Both routes will have two flights a week starting Jan. 1. “We look forward to serving customers travelling to Bishkek, the capital of Kyrgyzstan and Osh, the oldest city in Kyrgyzstan,” Mohamed Ahmed, CEO of SalamAir said. “We have been operating to Osh as a charter flight for the past two months and now we see the opportunity to further enhance the route by increasing the frequencies and make it a scheduled flight.” Ahmed added the LCC plans to market Oman as a winter destination in Kyrgystan, while the route would be supported with the export and import of cargo.

IndiGo has opened a domestic route between Guwahati (GAU) and Pune (PNQ). Flights will be daily. “These new domestic flights will strengthen inter and intra-regional connectivity and promote trade, commerce, as well as tourism in the eastern state,” IndiGo chief strategy and revenue officer Sanjay Kumar said. IndiGo believes the route will cut the travel time between the two destinations by more than 50%.

Air Transat’s Toronto (YYZ) service arrived back in Glasgow (GLA) on the morning of Dec. 16—making it the first North American route to operate to Scotland in more than a year. The service will offer up to 2X-weekly flights on Thursdays and Saturdays using Airbus A321neos during the winter season. During summer 2022, Air Transat will increase capacity and offer up to 4X-weekly services. Derek Provan, CEO of AGS Airports Ltd, which owns Aberdeen, Glasgow and Southampton airports, said he expects the YYZ-GLA route to have strong VFR flows.

From Dec. 17, American Airlines will fly from Munich (MUC) to Charlotte (CTL) for the first time since the beginning of the pandemic in March 2020. The carrier plans to operate the route daily using Boeing 777-200 aircraft.

Credit: Stockholm Skavsta

Stockholm Skavsta (NYO) has welcome Wizz Air’s first flight from Kyiv Zhuliany (IEV). The new route will be operated twice a week on Thursdays and Sundays. Kyiv becomes the fourth new destination the ULCC has launched from Stockholm Skavsta in 2021. The route is expected to appeal to business travelers as there are about 100 Swedish companies established in Ukraine and around 400 that are doing business with the country. It is also targeting leisure traffic.

Dec. 15

Brussels Airlines plans to further rebuild its African network from next summer with the resumption of several routes that have been suspended due to the pandemic. From June 11, 2022, service will resume from Brussels (BRU) to Conakry in Guinea and Ouagadougou in Burkina Faso, each of which will be 3X-weekly. In addition, Banjul, Lomé, and Monrovia in West Africa will have their flight frequencies increased to 5X-weekly. In East Africa, Kigali will also be served five times a week, while Entebbe will receive seven flights from Brussels per week. Brussels Airlines said it also plans to resume daily flights to New York John F Kennedy (JFK) from mid-June, up from 4X-weekly, while Washington Dulles (IAD) will have five flights per week during summer 2022.

EasyJet passengers will now be able to connect to Virgin Atlantic flights at Manchester (MAN), Edinburgh (EDI) and Belfast International (BFS) through the ‘Worldwide by easyJet’ service. Connecting destinations include Jersey to New York and Belfast to Barbados, with some connections available on a daily basis from next summer, such as Belfast to Orlando, all via either Manchester, Edinburgh or Belfast. Separately, easyJet has put flights for autumn 2022 on sale. More than 78,000 flights between Oct. 1 and Nov. 30 are now available to book.

Irish ULCC Ryanair has announced an additional route to its summer 2022 schedule from Manchester (MAN). Flights will be offered to Genoa (GOA) from April, operating twice a week. “The opening of this new route reinforces the airline’s commitment to the UK and the rebuilding of the country’s tourism industry, playing a key role in the recovery of local jobs and the economy,” the airline said in a statement.

FlyOne Armenia will make its maiden flight on Dec. 15, connecting Yerevan (EVN) with Moscow Vnukovo (VKO). The route will be served twice a day. As previously reported by Routes, the startup will progressively add more destinations to its network over the coming days. FlyOne general manager Mircea Maleca said the Moscow route would target VFR traffic, as well as some leisure and business travelers.

US carrier Delta Air Lines has resumed flights between Atlanta (ATL) and Munich (MUC). The route will be operated four times per week using Boeing 767-400s. The move means the Bavarian capital is connected nonstop to 11 US destinations—the same number as before the pandemic. Delta’s flights will operate on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays.

Dec. 14

SWISS is further expanding its network for the summer 2022 season with the addition of six new destinations in Europe. From Zurich (ZRH), flights will be launched to Bologna (BLQ), Nantes (NTE), Odessa (ODS), Sofia (SOF) and Vilnius (VNO), while from Geneva (GVA) a Brussels (BRU) route will be added. The carrier said it will serve a total of 119 destinations from Zurich and Geneva next summer—93 within Europe and 26 in its intercontinental network. Overall capacity will reach about 80% of 2019 levels. On the long-haul front, SWISS plans to increase frequencies from Zurich to Boston (BOS), Chicago (ORD) and New York (JFK) to 2X-daily, up from 1X-daily in summer 2021, and resume flights to Delhi (DEL) and Mumbai (BOM). Geneva-JFK will also expand to 7X-weekly.

Japan’s All Nippon Airways (ANA) has revised its international flight schedule from Jan. 12 to March 26, 2022 due to new public health measures and passenger demand trends. Additional measures will be introduced for select flights between now and Jan 11. The move affects 3,024 flights on 38 routes, leaving the operation rate for the period at 23% of its initial fiscal 2020 plan, the airline said. Routes affected include ANA’s 2X-weekly Tokyo Narita (NRT)-Brussels (BRU) service and its 3X-weekly Tokyo Haneda ((HND}})-Paris Charles de Gaulle (CDG) operation, each of which will be suspended on Jan. 12.

Ryanair is opening four new routes from Cagliari (CAG) in Italy during the summer 2022 season. The airline will fly to Carcassonne (CCF), Nuremberg (NUE), Palma de Mallorca (PMI) and Poznan (POZ). The additions increase the ULCC’s network from the Sardinian airport to 38 destinations and more than 160 departing flights per week. This represents an increase of 12 routes compared with the summer 2019 season and 42% more flights.

Air Belgium is launching two flights per week from Brussels (BRU) to Curacao (CUR) from Dec. 15, which will operate via Punta Cana (PUJ) in the Dominican Republic. Flights will be on Wednesdays and Saturdays onboard Airbus A330neo aircraft. The route sees the carrier switch from serving Curacao from Brussels Charleroi (CRL) with a stop in Fort de France (FDF). “With the launch of this new route, the Belgian airline is extending the range of services available to passengers looking to travel to the Caribbean's most popular destinations,” Air Belgium said in a statement. Air Belgium now serves three destinations from BRU after launching Mauritius in October.

Credit: Brussels Airport
Credit: Brussels Airport

Dec. 13

Ryanair is adding another route between the UK and Ireland next summer. Flights will connect Birmingham (BHX) with Knock (NOC) from March 2022, operating twice a week until the end of October. The Irish ULCC said the planned launch “reinforces the airline’s commitment to the UK and the rebuilding of the country’s tourism industry, playing a key role in the recovery of local jobs and the economy.” Meanwhile, Ryanair has also confirmed that it will reopen a base at Nuremberg (NUE) in Germany during summer 2022. Two aircraft will be based at the airport, allowing for the launch of 13 new routes. The new destinations comprise Banja Luka, Cagliari, Chania, Dublin, Faro, Girona, Ibiza, Lviv, Madeira, Sofia, Tallinn, Valencia and Venice.

Dubai-based LCC flydubai and Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) have signed an interline agreement that will provide passengers with more options for travel between Pakistan, the United Arab Emirates and beyond. The interline agreement will allow PIA to sell seats beyond Dubai to nine destinations on the flydubai network: Almaty, Bahrain, Baku, Baghdad, Istanbul, Kuwait, Mashhad, Moscow and Najaf. In turn, flydubai will be able to sell seats on PIA’s flights between Islamabad, Lahore and Peshawar connecting in Dubai and anywhere on flydubai’s network. “This interline partnership is a first step to build logical commercial development for both carriers,” PIA CEO Arshad Malik said. “It will enable both the carriers to cater to the strong customer demand for business and leisure travel between Dubai and Pakistan and beyond.”

Qatar Airways has launched flights from Doha (DOH) to Odessa (ODS) in Ukraine. The port city on the Black Sea becomes the airline’s second destination in Ukraine alongside Kyiv. Service will be offered three times per week using Airbus A320s. Qatar Airways CEO Akbar Al Baker said he expects the new route will appeal to leisure and business travelers, particularly seafarers and offshore workers.

Irish carrier Aer Lingus has inaugurated a new route between Manchester (MAN) and Orlando (MCO). The International Airlines Group carrier will operate the nonstop service four times per week using A330s. Orlando becomes the third long-haul destination offered by the airline from Manchester in addition to Barbados (BGI) and New York John F Kennedy (JFK), which began on Oct. 20 and Dec. 1 respectively.

Ukraine International Airlines has partnered with tour operator Compass to offer a long-haul charter program from Kyiv Boryspil (KBP). Starting on Dec. 27, the airline will begin serving Punta Cana (PUJ) in the Dominican Republic, Cancun (CUN) in Mexico, and Male (MLE) in the Maldives using a EuroAtlantic Boeing 777-200ER aircraft in a two-class configuration.

Dec. 10

Kenya Airways is to start flights from Juba to Khartoum from Dec. 10, counter-rotating on an Embraer 190, and boosting its Nairobi schedule to 10x weekly from the current 7 flights from Juba and 3x weekly flights to Khartoum. Kenya Airways CEO Allan Kilavuka said: “Kenya Airways is steadfast on creating free flows of trade and tourism across Africa and in other key markets because we believe our wide network and reliable services will aid in opening up opportunities across the region. The move comes as the region continues to enhance economic cooperation to drive sustainable growth across a range of sectors, in addition to boosting business between African nations.”

Dec. 9

Dec. 8

South African Airways (SAA) and CemAir, a Johannesburg-based regional carrier, signed an interline agreement that SAA said extends the network reach of both carriers and will enable passengers to have a "seamless" travel experience when connecting between the two airlines. SAA interim CEO Thomas Kgokolo said: "Fares will be issued on one itinerary and ticket, guaranteeing connectivity to more than one destination."

Dec. 7

Vancouver Airport Authority (YVR) has welcomed back Singapore Airlines and said the route to Singapore (SIN) will "connect Vancouver to an important global market and help us better serve our community". The new route will use Airbus A350-900 equipment and operate four days per week.

SIA YVR launch
Photo credit: Vancouver Airport Authority

Dec. 6

The first Eurowings flight from Düsseldorf (DUS) arrived at Rovaniemi Airport (RVN) in Finland. It will operate weekly on Sundays throughout the winter season. "The new connection between Rovaniemi and Düsseldorf gives the passengers from Germany a direct access to the snowy Lapland, and passengers from nothern Finland a smooth route to the Western Europe," said Petri Vuori, SVP sales and route development at Finavia.

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines has increased services between Amsterdam (AMS) and Newcastle International Airport (NCL) to up to four flights daily. NCL's Leon McQuaid said: "As we move from 2021 and into 2022, the added capacity to the schedule will not only improve the region’s connectivity to Amsterdam but also throughout the world thanks to KLM’s wider global network.”

Flair Airlines has added service between Toronto (YYZ) and Phoenix (AZA) as part of a number of incoming routes to the US city. Routes from Arizona to Edmonton, Calgary, and Vancouver will start Dec. 16.

Dec. 3

Jazeera Airways has operated its first flights to Almaty (ALA) in Kazakhstan. Service from Kuwait (KWI) will be twice a week on Wednesdays and Sundays. “Jazeera continues to expand to unique destinations that are rarely served by other airlines in our region,” CEO Rohit Ramachandran said. In November, the airline finalized an order with Airbus at the Dubai Air Show for 28 new aircraft, comprising 20 A320neos and eight A321neos. The order is valued in excess of $3.3 billion at list prices.

LATAM Airlines Colombia has inaugurated five new domestic services. From Cali (CLO), daily flights have started to Pasto (PSO) alongside a 3X-weekly service to Montería (MTR). Two routes have also opened from Medellín (MDE), connecting the city with Pereira (PEI) and Leticia (LET). Flights to PEI will be daily and to LET will be 5X-weekly. The fifth new route links PEI with Cartagena (CTG) and will be operated daily. The additions increase LATAM Airlines Colombia’s domestic network to 32 routes.

Ryanair plans to station a second aircraft at Brindisi (BDS) in Italy during the summer 2022 season, enabling the launch of two new routes. One of the additional services will be a domestic route to Perugia (PEG), while the second will link Brindisi with Sweden’s capital Stockholm. In total, the Irish ULCC expects to offer 23 routes from the Italian city during the summer season.

Ryanair brindisi
Credit: Ryanair

Austrian Airlines is adding another weekly frequency on its nonstop service to Cancun (CUN) in Mexico. From Jan. 25, 2022, the airline will offer flights from Vienna (VIE) on Tuesdays, in addition to its Thursday and Sunday connections. The carrier launched the route in October—15 years after last serving the vacation destination. Service is operated using Boeing 777s. Between Dec. 19 and Jan. 9, Austrian will also offer 10 VIE-CUN frequencies due to high demand during the Christmas holiday period.

Dec. 2

Icelandic startup Play has added Dublin (DUB) to its summer schedule for 2022. The LCC will operate three flights per week from Reykjavik (KEF), starting in late April. Flights will also be offered to Madrid (MAD) and Brussels (BRU) during the summer season. “I’m sure that the people of Dublin, Brussels and Madrid will be thrilled learning that they now have more options getting to Iceland and over the Atlantic to North America,” Play CEO Birgir Jónsson said. “This expansion is part of a bigger transatlantic plan that we look forward to rolling out in the next few months.”

Emirates will resume its passenger operations between Dubai (DXB) and Nigeria from Dec. 5 after restrictions were lifted on the carrier’s flights to the West African country. The airline plans to offer nonstop daily service to Abuja (ABV), departing Dubai at 11 a.m. and arriving in Abuja at 3.40 p.m. The return flight leaves at 7 p.m. and arrives back in Dubai at 4.35 a.m. the following day. Emirates will also offer daily flights to Lagos (LOS), departing Dubai at 10.30 a.m. and arriving in Lagos at 3.40 p.m. On the return leg, the flight leaves at 6.10 p.m. and arrives in DXB at 4.15 a.m. the next day.

Bangkok Airways has resumed service between Bangkok Suvarnabhumi (BKK) and Phnom Penh (PNH) in Cambodia. Flights will initially operate four times per week using Airbus A320s on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays, increasing to daily from Dec. 16. Cambodia Airways, Lanmei Airlines and Thai Smile Airways also operate BKK-PNH flights, while Thai AirAsia flies to PNH from Bangkok Don Mueang (DMK).

Dec. 1

Eurowings is adding more routes from Stockholm Arlanda (ARN) in conjunction with the establishment of a new base at the airport. Beginning March 4, 2022, the LCC will fly from the Swedish capital to Prague (PRG), operating twice a week on Fridays and Sundays. The carrier has already announced plans to station five aircraft at ARN from late March, flying to 20 destinations in Europe. More than 200,000 passengers flew between Sweden and Prague in 2019, the majority of which were leisure travelers.

Russian LCC Pobeda plans to open a new domestic service from St Petersburg (LED) during the summer 2022 season. Flights to Begishevo Airport (NBC), located 19 km east of Nizhnekamsk in the Tatarstan region, will begin on March 27. Flights will be offered daily using 189-seat Boeing 737-800 aircraft.

Aeroflot is expanding frequencies from Moscow Sheremetyevo (SVO) to Cancun (CUN) in Mexico and Varadero (VRA) in Cuba. Both leisure routes will increase to 4X-weekly. Flights to Cancun are now on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays, while service to Varadero operates on Mondays, Wednesdays, Saturdays, and Sundays. As reported by Routes on Nov. 30, the SkyTeam alliance member is also resuming regular flights to the Cuban capital Havana (HAV) starting on Dec. 21.

Air Serbia has signed a codeshare agreement with Italy’s new national carrier ITA Airways. The Serbian airline will place its JU flight code on ITA Airways flights from Rome (FCO) to two international destinations—Athens and Tirana—as well as domestic services to Bari, Brindisi, Genoa, Catania, Lamezia Terme, Palermo, Turin, Trieste and Venice. ITA will add its AZ flight code to Air Serbia’s scheduled flights from Rome and Milan Malpensa (MXP) to Belgrade (BEG). In addition, ITA passengers will be able to fly via Belgrade to 11 select international destinations operated by Air Serbia.

Nordwind will launch nonstop flights from Sochi (AER) to Doha ({{DOH})) in Qatar during the first quarter of 2022. Flights will run once a week using 787-800s from March 5, departing AER on Saturdays at 7.35 p.m. and arriving in DOH at 11.05 p.m. The return service leaves at 1.05 a.m. on Sundays and arrives back in the Russian city at 4.55 a.m. the same day. From April, the airline said the number of flights on the route will increase to twice a week.