Routes & Networks Latest: Rolling Daily Updates (WC Feb 12, 2024)
The latest airline route news, featuring network changes, schedule alterations, codeshares and interline agreements.
Ryanair says it has decided to switch three aircraft from Dublin Airport (DUB) to bases in Italy, hitting out at the Irish gateway’s “artificial traffic cap.” The number of passengers that DUB can handle has been limited to 32 million per year as a condition of allowing it to operate its recently opened north runway. On the same day the airline called for the cap to be lifted, it announced a new base at Reggio Calabria Airport in southern Italy, marking its 19th base in the country. One aircraft will be stationed at the airport, and eight new routes will be launched to Barcelona, Berlin, Bologna, Manchester, Marseille, Tirana, Turin and Venice.
Porter Airlines is adding three new Embraer E195-E2 crew bases across Canada. About 150 pilots and flight attendants will be based at Ottawa International Airport (YOW) from June; 100 at Montréal-Trudeau International Airport (YUL) starting in July; and 100 at Vancouver International Airport (YVR) from October. This summer, Porter will operate 14 nonstop routes from YOW, six routes from YUL and three routes from YVR. Porter already has an Embraer E195-E2 crew base at Toronto Pearson, as well as Dash 8-400 crew bases at Toronto City, Ottawa, Halifax and Thunder Bay.
Aer Europa is resuming seasonal service to Marrakech, Morocco, and Tunis, Tunisia. Flights from Madrid to Marrakech will restart on March 21, followed by Tunis on March 27. Frequencies on each route will be 2X-weekly using Boeing 737 aircraft, operating until the end of October. An additional weekly flight will be added to the Tunisian capital in June.
Canadian ULCC Lynx Air has launched its inaugural flight to Mexico, departing from Toronto Pearson International Airport and arriving at Cancún International Airport. The carrier will offer six flights per week on the route, equating to more than 2,000 seats per week both ways.
Turkmenistan Airlines has commenced weekly Ashgabat-Kuala Lumpur service. Frequencies on the route connecting Turkmenistan's capital with Kuala Lumpur will increase to 2X-weekly from mid-March.
American Airlines has opened a new service from Phoenix-Sky Harbor International Airport to Tijuana, Mexico. Daily nonstop flights to General Abelardo L. Rodríguez International Airport will be operated using both Embraer 175 and Bombardier CRJ700 aircraft. “We expect the new flight to generate $10 million in economic impact every year and ultimately help us on our mission to diversify and fortify Phoenix’s growing economy, particularly in the manufacturing industry,” Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego says.
United Airlines has urged the U.S. Transportation Department (DOT) to “immediately grant” its request to takeover Hawaiian Airlines’ nighttime slots at Tokyo Haneda Airport (HND). It called for the department’s approval given that no other U.S. carrier has applied for the slots and the time for answering United’s application has lapsed. The Star Alliance member wants to introduce daily flights from Guam’s Antonio B. Won Pat International Airport to HND from May 1. “A prompt award of this slot pair to United will ensure that that this valuable asset will immediately be put to its highest and best use as soon as it becomes available,” United said in its latest DOT request. Hawaiian has opted to relinquish the slots as the Japan-Hawaii market is “still encountering headwinds.”
Northern Ireland’s Economy Minister Conor Murphy has confirmed funding of £1 million ($1.26 million) to support the continuation of flights between City of Derry Airport and London Heathrow Airport. The route, which is jointly funded by the Transport Department and the Economy Department, is served up to 20 times per week by Loganair. The funding begins on April 1 for one year. City of Derry Airport Managing Director Steve Frazer says the route will help to drive “inward investment and growth opportunities” across the region.
Japan’s Zipair Tokyo is expanding service between Tokyo Narita International Airport and San José Mineta International Airport, California, during the summer season. The LCC intends to increase frequencies from five to six times per week from June 1 through Sept. 30. Additionally, flights to Honolulu will rise from three to four per week from March 31.
Gulf Air has confirmed the addition of Geneva and Rhodes as new destinations to its summer 2024 network alongside several frequency increases. The carrier will offer a 2X-weekly Bahrain-Mykonos-Rhodes service from June 1 through Sept. 28, and a 2X-weekly Bahrain-Milan Malpensa-Geneva route from June 4 through Sept. 27. Service to Manchester will also rise from 4X to 5X-weekly from July 5; to Milan Malpensa from 3X to 6X-weekly from July 2; and Muscat from nine to 16X-weekly from April 15. Additionally, Malaga returns to Gulf Air’s schedule and will be served 3X-weekly from June 17 through Sept. 28 using Boeing 787-9s.
Canada’s Porter Airlines has inaugurated domestic service between Ottawa and Calgary. The new daily roundtrip service will be operated using 132-seat Embraer E195-E2 aircraft. The launch increases Porter’s network from Ottawa to 16 routes.
Croatia Airlines is expanding its route network from Split by introducing a new seasonal service to Istanbul. From May 7 through mid-October, flights will be offered three times per week on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays in the evenings from Split, returning from Istanbul the next morning.
Frontier Airlines will begin nonstop service from Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG) to six additional destinations in May 2024. With the new routes, the ULCC will serve a total of 20 destinations from CVG, increasing average peak-summer daily departures by 57% versus a year ago. Flights to Charlotte, North Carolina, and Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood, in Florida, will start on May 16, followed by Houston Intercontinental the next day. Operations to Portland, Maine, and Pensacola, Florida, begin on May 21 and to Boston on May 22. Portland and Pensacola will be 3X-weekly, while the rest will be 4X-weekly. These routes are in addition to service announced last month from CVG to Minneapolis-Saint Paul and New York LaGuardia.
Icelandic carrier Play has opened reservations for a new route to Vilnius, Lithuania. The first flights from Reykjavik will commence on May 25, operating once a week on Saturdays. Data provided by OAG Schedules Analyser shows that the airline will be the sole operator of flights between the cities.
Canada Jetlines is introducing two new routes from Halifax Stanfield International Airport. Starting on June 1, the carrier will offer two flights per week to Toronto Pearson International Airport, followed by a 2X-weekly service to Florida's Orlando International Airport the next day. “This service expansion to both markets will enable increased visitation to the province and provide more choice for our passengers looking to travel this summer,” says Marie Manning, Halifax International Airport Authority vice president and CCO.
Air Canada is expanding its Asia-Pacific network with the launch of a second route to the Japanese city Osaka. Flights will connect Toronto Pearson International Airport with Osaka Kansai International Airport (KIX) three times per week from June 17 through Oct. 25. The Star Alliance member plans to deploy Boeing 787-8 aircraft on the 6,609-mi. (5,743-nm) sector, data provided by OAG Schedules Analyser shows. Air Canada will also serve KIX from Vancouver International Airport during the summer 2024 season, with flights set to resume on May 1, operating 3X-weekly. Service increases to 6X-weekly from mid-June.
Mexican regional carrier Aerus has applied to the U.S. Transportation Department to begin offering flights to the U.S. The airline, which began operations in 2023 using Cessna Grand Caravan EX aircraft, hopes to serve four destinations in Texas, flying from Monterrey to Brownsville, Corpus Christi, Laredo and McAllen, as well as from Tampico to Brownsville and McAllen. Aerus estimates it will operate up to 1,200 roundtrip flights annually between Mexico and the U.S., with an average load of eight passengers per flight.
Alaska Airlines is increasing frequencies on nine routes from Portland, Oregon, adding more than 20 daily departures and hiking capacity by 25%. From Aug. 20, frequencies to Las Vegas will be 5X-daily; Sacramento, California, will be 4X-daily; Ontario, California, will be 3X-daily; and Reno, Nevada, will be 3X-daily. From Oct. 1, Phoenix will be 4X-daily, while Dallas-Fort Worth, Denver, Frenso, California, and Medford, Oregon, will each be 2X-daily. Alaska currently serves 53 nonstop destinations from Portland and will launch service to Nashville, Tennessee, on March 14.
LATAM Airlines Group plans to open a new seasonal service from Chile’s capital Santiago to Orlando, Florida. Flights will start on June 16, operating twice a week through Sept. 28. “We are very happy to be able to announce this new flight to Orlando, which represents further progress in our joint venture with Delta and allows us to add a new route to the U.S.,” LATAM Airlines Group CCO Martin St. George says. “The flight will connect thousands of passengers from all over South America to one of the most important vacation destinations in the world.”
Indonesia’s Lion Air has announced the launch of two new domestic routes. Daily flights connecting Ambon, the capital of Maluku Province, with Jakarta will begin on Feb. 16. This will be followed by service between Makassar and Kupang from March 21, operating daily using Boeing 737-800 and 737-900ER aircraft. Earlier this month, Lion Air also confirmed two other new routes, with daily Sorong-Jakarta flights starting on Feb. 16, and a daily Makassar-Banjarmasin link beginning on March 20.
Allegiant Air has announced 10 new nonstop routes to 14 cities in the U.S. From Los Angeles International Airport, flights to Laredo International Airport and Chicago Rockford International Airport will begin on June 12, followed by Rapid City Regional Airport on June 14. McGhee Tyson Airport in Tennessee will be linked to MidAmerica St. Louis Airport from June 13, and Jacksonville International Airport and South Bend International Airport from June 14. St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport will gain new routes to Evansville Regional Airport and McAllen International Airport on June 13 and 14, respectively, while Sarasota Bradenton International Airport-Plattsburgh International Airport service starts on June 12. Finally, Jacksonville International Airport (JAX) in Florida will be connected to Harrisburg International Airport and McGhee Tyson Airport from June 14.
AirJapan has commenced commercial operations with flights connecting Tokyo Narita Airport and Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport. The route will be offered six times per week onboard Boeing 787-8 equipment, increasing to daily from April 30. The LCC will also start flying to Seoul Incheon this month and launch service to Singapore Changi in April.
Vietnamese LCC VietJet has launched a new route between Ho Chi Minh City and Chengdu Tianfu, China. Frequencies will be daily with a flight time of just over 4 hr. per leg. “The new service expects to offer Asian travelers a new travel option for the Spring holidays,” the airline says in a statement. “It also further strengthens the air connectivity of Vietnam and China while promoting trade and tourism between two countries and in the region.”
Starting from May 23, BA Euroflyer is set to launch a new route from London Gatwick Airport to Jersey. Flights will be available up to four times a week throughout the summer 2024 season, operating using a mix of Airbus A320 and A321 aircraft.