Routes In Brief: Rolling Daily Updates (W/C Jan. 9, 2023)
Ryanair has announced changes to its Italian network for the summer 2023 season with 28 new routes from airports in Milan and Rome. From Milan Bergamo (BGY) and Milan Malpensa (MXP), the ULCC will operate 140 routes, including 10 new connections from BGY and two from MXP. New destinations from Bergamo include Routes Europe 2023 host Lodz (LCJ). Ryanair launched flights to the Polish city during winter 2022/23 and service will continue during the summer. From Rome Ciampino (CIA) and Rome Fiumicino (FCO), the carrier will offer a combined 81 routes, with 11 new destinations from FCO and five from CIA. Routes being added to the schedule include Fiumicino to Alicante (ALC), Dublin (DUB) and Palma (PMI).
Armenia’s Fly Arna is opening a route from Yerevan (EVN) to St Petersburg (LED). Flights will operate three times per week on Mondays, Thursdays and Sundays. The airline will become the fourth carrier on the route alongside FlyOne Armenia, Utair and Rossiya.
IndiGo is to launch a new route between Hubballi (HBX) and Pune (PNQ) from Feb. 5, entering a market that is currently unserved by nonstop flights. The route will operate twice a week. Head of sales Vinay Malhotra said: “Currently, it takes eight-11 hours to travel between Pune and Hubballi by road or rail. The Hubballi-Dharwad is one of the fastest growing regions in India, and there is a great demand for air connectivity which IndiGo is attempting to fulfil.” In addition, IndiGo has inaugurated service between Kolhapur (KLH) and Bengaluru (BLR). Flights will be daily.
Canadian ULCC Swoop has operated its inaugural service between Toronto Pearson (YYZ) and Juan Gualberto Gomez International (VRA) in Varadero, Cuba. Flights will be 3X-weekly. “We are thrilled to have Swoop flying to Cuba, it means additional air lift to our country and a growth opportunity to the destination,” said Lessner Gomez, director of Cuba Tourist Board in Toronto. In addition to the first Varadero flight, Swoop has launched a new nonstop service between Hamilton (YHM) and Punta Cana (PUJ).
IndiGo has commenced its first flights linking Dehradun (DED) and Pune (PNQ), which will operate six times per week. “The direct connection between the capital of Uttarakhand and the greenest city in Maharashtra will reduce travel time by 5 hours, catering to both business and leisure travelers,” head of sales Vinay Malhotra said.
Wizz Air’s latest routes to Saudi Arabia have been launched. Budapest (BUD) and Bucharest (OTP) are now connected nonstop with Riyadh (RUH) twice a week. Additionally, Budapest, Bucharest and Rome Fiumicino (FCO) now have two flights per week to Jeddah (JED). Fahd Hamidaddin, CEO and member of the board at Saudi Tourism Authority, said: “Saudi has quickly become one of the most exciting destinations for European travelers.”
Indian startup Akasa Air has launched its first flights from New Goa Airport (GOX), also known as Goa Mopa and North Goa. The airline will offer 2X-daily service to Mumbai (BOM) and Bengaluru (BLR) from Feb. 1, increasing the latter route to 3X-daily from Feb. 1. “We are pleased to take off from our 12th destination within five months of our commercial launch,” co-founder and CCO Praveen Iyer said. “We are constantly expanding our network with an aircraft arriving every 15 days to fulfil our goal of developing a strong pan-India presence.” IndiGo and Go First became the first carriers to serve GOX earlier this month.
Bamboo Airways has opened a route between the Vietnamese coastal city Da Nang (DAD) and Muan (MWX) in South Korea. Flights will be twice a week using Airbus A321s. OAG shows Jeju Airlines also serves the market 2X-weekly onboard Boeing 737-800s.
Colombia’s Avianca has inaugurated a new service between Cartagena (STG) and Sao Paulo Guarulhos (GRU). The 4,910-km (2,651-nm) route will be offered three times per week using A319s. The airline will be the sole provider of nonstop flights between the destinations.
China Southern Airlines plans to increase service between Guangzhou (CAN) and Auckland (AKL). Flights are currently operating twice a week but will double to 4X-weekly from Jan. 26. The airline has also filed schedules to operate daily Boeing 787 service from Guangzhou to Los Angeles (LAX) from Jan. 30; daily Guangzhou-New York John F Kennedy (JFK) service with 777-300ERs and 787s from Feb. 2; and daily Guangzhou-San Francisco (SFO) flights with 787s from Feb. 10.
Cambodia Airways is to commence a 3X-weekly Phnom Penh (PNH)-Beijing Daxing (PKX) service from Jan. 17. OAG data shows that the carrier will compete in the Phnom Penh-Beijing market with Air China, which resumed a 1X-weekly service from Beijing Capital (PEK) on Jan. 10.
TAP Air Portugal is launching a new route from Porto (OPO) to Luanda (LAD), the capital of Angola. The airline said a 2X-weekly service would start in late May, pending government approvals. The route was last served nonstop by TAAG Angola Airlines in March 2020, OAG data shows. In addition, TAP has announced that frequencies between Porto and New York Newark (EWR) will increase from 2X-weekly to daily using Airbus A321LR aircraft. The number of flights will initially rise to 5X-weekly in April and then daily in June.
Avelo Airlines has postponed the planned launch of 2X-weekly flights to Dubuque Regional Airport (DBQ) in Iowa after the airport was unable to secure the necessary Transportation Security Administration (TSA) approval of its airport security plan in time for the first service. The US carrier had been due to start flights to Orlando (MCO) on Jan. 11. “We are working with TSA to resolve this as quickly as possible,” DBQ airport director Todd Dalsing said.
Vietnam’s civil aviation authority has confirmed that Vietnamese airlines are permitted to restart regular flights to China following the country’s decision to reopen its borders on Jan. 8. During the first phase of the resumption, carriers will be able to restore pre-pandemic frequencies under existing bilateral aviation agreements. “Regarding slots, airlines can restore flights as they were before the COVID-19 pandemic, using historical slots based on the principle of reciprocity,” a statement from the Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam said.