Routes In Brief: Rolling Daily Updates (W/C July 11, 2022)

Credit: Rob Finlayson

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

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July 15

Sun Country Airlines has been selected by the US Transport Department to provide essential air service (EAS) for Chippewa Valley Regional Airport (EAU) in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, beginning in December 2022. The airline will provide Eau Claire with a total of 4X-weekly round trips per week, including two services per week to Minneapolis-St. Paul (MSP) and approximately two per week to Orlando (MCO), Las Vegas (LAS) or Fort Myers (RSW) adjusted seasonally. “Sun Country’s business model surges in times of peak demand, including the winter months, and utilizes cargo and charter flying at times of the year with less demand for scheduled service flying,” said Grant Whitney, Sun Country chief revenue officer. “This is a great fit for Sun Country to provide additional service in Wisconsin, and we are excited to bring new service to the Chippewa Valley region.”

Canadian ULCC Lynx Air has launched its first flight from Edmonton International (YEG). The airline will initially serve Toronto Pearson (YYZ) five times per week, with a through flight to St John’s International (YYT). From July 30, Lynx plans to increase YEG-YYZ to 7X-weekly and operate two through flights to Halifax Stanfield (YHZ). The move means Lynx will operate 14 flights per week in and out of Edmonton, which equates to 2,646 seats per week.

Royal Air Maroc will transfer its daily AT850 and AT851 Casablanca (CMN)-Amsterdam (AMS) flights to Maastricht Airport (MST) between July 16 and Aug. 10. This follows the decision to reduce the number of flights and passengers departing from and arriving at Amsterdam. A statement issued by Royal Air Maroc said it “additional measures will be taken” if this situation persists beyond Aug. 10.

US airline aha! has operated its inaugural nonstop flights from Reno (RNO). The carrier will connect the airport with Sonoma County (STS), located seven miles northwest of downtown Santa Rosa, California. Flights will operate on Thursdays and Sundays.

July 14

A 2X-weekly route to Samarkand (SKD) in Uzbekistan is being launched by Dubai-based LCC flydubai. Flights from Dubai International (DXB) will operate on Tuesdays and Fridays from Sept. 20. The new service expands the airline’s network to 102 destinations, served by a fleet of 65 Boeing 737 family aircraft. “We started our operations to Uzbekistan in 2019 and we were pleased to see the market grow as the demand for travel returned,” flydubai CCO Hamad Obaidalla said. “With a combined frequency of eight flights a week to Samarkand and Tashkent, we look forward to further supporting the trade and cultural links with the UAE and encouraging more people to visit this beautiful country steeped in history and tradition.”

EasyJet is adding three new routes to its UK network for the winter 2022 season. The UK-based LCC will offer flights from London Gatwick (LGW) to Porto Santo (PXO) in Madeira starting Nov. 2; Bristol (BRS) to Rovaniemi (RVN) in northern Finland starting Nov. 18; and Manchester (MAN) to Fuerteventura (FUE) starting Nov. 1. All three routes will operate twice a week. In addition, easyJet said it plans to resume three more routes that were suspended during the pandemic. London Luton (LTN)-Madrid (MAD) will resume on Oct. 31, operating 6X-weekly; Manchester-Rovaniemi returns on Nov. 19 and will be 2X-weekly; and Liverpool (LPL)-Paris Charles de Gaulle (CDG) restarts on Oct. 30 and will be daily.

Irish ULCC Ryanair is adding three new routes to its Vienna (VIE) winter 2022 schedule. Flights will be offered to Copenhagen (CPH) in Denmark, Helsinki (HEL) in Finland and Tuzla (TZL) Bosnia & Herzegovina. The move increases the airline’s winter flight schedule from Vienna to more than 70 destinations. To accommodate the growth, Ryanair confirmed it is in “advanced negotiations” for a four-year extension of Lauda Europe’s Airbus A320 fleet to 2027/28. Ryanair also bases Boeing 737 aircraft in Vienna, operated by subsidiaries Malta Air and Buzz.

July 13

Tigerair Taiwan is opening a new route connecting Taiwan Taoyuan (TPE) and Sapporo New Chitose (CTS) in Japan. The route will begin on Sept. 1, operating five times per week on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Sundays.

Colombian LCC Wingo is launching a second route to Aruba (AUA). The carrier will begin flying to the Caribbean island from Medellin (MDE) on Oct. 1. Flights will be 2X-weekly on Wednesdays and Saturdays. The airline already serves AUA from Bogota (BOG), operating three times per week. The new route equates too approximately 3,000 extra seats monthly to and from Aruba. Charter operator Sarpa Airlines also serves AUA-MDE 3X-weekly.

LATAM Airlines Group is resuming 14 routes during July, including the restart of Paulo Guarulhos (GRU)-Rome Fiumicino FCO) and Fortaleza (FOR)-Miami (MIA). The group said it expects to operate approximately 1,261 daily national and international flights during the month, connecting 139 destinations in 22 countries. Available seat kilometers (ASKs) will be about 80% of July 2019 levels.

Italy’s ITA Airways is expanding its intercontinental network with a new service linking Rome Fiumicino and Malé (MLE) in the Maldives. The route will start on Dec. 17 through March 26, 2023. Flights will initially be 3X-weekly, before reducing to 2X-weekly from Jan. 23 until the end of the winter season.

July 12

Relaunched regional carrier Flybe has launched a route between Birmingham (BHX) in the UK and Brest (BES) in France. Flights will operate weekly on Saturdays through Sept. 10 using 77-seat Dash 8s. Flybe CEO Dave Pflieger said the route was a natural integration into the UK airline’s network given the demand from British leisure travelers wishing to discover Brittany. The airline has also started flying to Avignon (AVN) from Birmingham, providing one round-trip per week until Sept. 17. Both routes were last served in summer 2019 by the previous incarnation of Flybe.

Corendon Airlines has confirmed it will continue to offer flights from Newcastle (NCL) in the UK to Antalya (AYT) and Dalaman (DLM) in Turkey during the summer 2023 season. The LCC began operating flights from NCL for the first time this year and currently serves AYT 2X-weekly and DLM 1X-weekly. The carrier said the frequencies would remain the same during the summer 2023 season, while it will also offer a 1X-weekly service to AYT during the winter 2022/23 season.

Venezuela’s Conviasa has increased the frequency of flights between Caracas (CCS) and Moscow Vnukovo (VKO) from fortnightly to weekly. Flights will be onboard Airbus A340s. In addition, the airline has announced plans to launch a 2X-weekly Caracas-Algiers (ALG) service from July 27 and a weekly Caracas-Guangzhou (CAN) route with a technical stop in Tehran (IKA) from July 30.

July 11

Bamboo Airways is to commence a weekly nonstop service between Hanoi (HAN) and London Gatwick (LGW) from Oct. 29. Flights will operate on Saturdays using Boeing 787-9s. In addition, the airline said it plans to launch a second route to Gatwick from Ho Chi Minh City (SGN). The new service to Hanoi means passengers can now travel to 40 long-haul destinations from Gatwick.

Reservations for Virgin Atlantic’s planned new route between London Heathrow (LHR) and Tampa (TPA) are set to open on July 13. The UK-based carrier is launching the route on Nov. 3, initially operating 4X-weekly before increasing to daily from Nov. 28. “We know based on the latest economic studies that a daily nonstop European route brings in more than $154 million impact and creates approximately 1,200 jobs in our region,” said Chris Steinocher, president and CEO of the St. Petersburg Area Chamber of Commerce. “Virgin Atlantic’s Heathrow-TPA is a big win for everyone, and we look forward to working with our partners to ensure this route is a great success."

Ryanair will reopen a base at Belfast International (BFS) during the summer 2023 season and offer 12 routes. As well as flying to exciting sun destinations such as Alicante (ALC), Faro (FAO) and Malaga (AGP), the ULCC will also launch UK domestic services to East Midlands (EMA), Edinburgh (EDI), London Stansted (STN) and Manchester (MAN). Ryanair’s Belfast based fleet will comprise two aircraft. “This is a significant investment, bringing job creation and positive news for our passengers and the region,” Belfast International CFO Dan Owens said. “It increases the number of destinations now available from the airport to over 70 domestic and international destinations.”

Colombia’s Viva is increasing frequencies on its newly launched routes to Buenos Aires, Cancun and São Paulo. Service to Buenos Aires Ministro Pistarini (EZE) from both Bogota ({{BOG}) and Medellin (MDE) will rise from 4X-weekly to 5X-weekly; Medellin-Sao Paulo Guarulhos (GRU) is increasing from 3X-weekly to 4X-weekly; and Medellin-Cancun ({{CN}}) is growing from 8X-weekly to 10X-weekly.

VietJet has confirmed plans to launch two services linking Da Nang (DAD) and Ho Chi Minh City (SGN) with Busan (BUS) in South Korea on July 20 and July 25 respectively. Flights on each route will be daily. Earlier this month, the Vietnamese LCC restarted daily service to Busan from Hanoi (HAN) and will resume daily Nha Trang (NHA) operations from July 21. “With four services to Busan, our flight network between Vietnam and South Korea reaches 10 routes this month, offering the largest flight capacity between the two countries,” VietJet VP Nguyen Thanh Son said.

David Casey

David Casey is Editor in Chief of Routes, the global route development community's trusted source for news and information.