European airlines increase flight capacity – AirlineGeeks.com
By José Antonio Payet
European airlines increase their flight capacity
Europe braces for a busy summer season as vaccination campaigns continue and more people are vaccinated against COVID-19. According to FlightGlobal, the number of planes parked for more than a week on the continent more than halved between May and June as airlines prepare to take people on vacation.
According to the European Travel Commission, 56% of Europeans plan to travel this summer. While nearly 40% of them expect to do so in their own country, airlines have high hopes for leisure travel this summer as many passengers are ready to venture out for the first time. times since the pandemic.
Iberia expects a busier summer period after operating at 40% capacity in the first months of 2021. The airline believes there is significant contained demand that will increase as travel restrictions are lifted . For the summer, the carrier has increased the number of frequencies from Spain to destinations in Italy and Greece.
Iberia has also taken over a bunch of services between Madrid and South America and will operate more than 90 weekly frequencies between Spain and Latin America. The airline operates 12 flights between Madrid and Mexico City and one daily flight to Lima, Santiago de Chile, Bogota and Sao Paulo each.
As Spain opens its borders to travel vaccinations, more South American travelers are expected to travel to Spain for vacations. While the vaccination rate remains slow in some countries, more South American travelers will be eligible to travel to Spain in the coming months as these rates increase. In addition, travelers who have benefited from vaccine tourism to the United States, which is not a minor number, can travel to Spain by showing proof of vaccination.
In neighboring France, Air France also has major plans for the summer season. Throughout the summer, the airline will operate 81 seasonal routes, increasing capacity to Greece by almost 80% and to Portugal by almost 25%. For the long-haul, since the French Antilles are once again opening up to tourists; Air France will operate up to three flights per week between Paris-Orly and Pointe-à-Pitre in Guadeloupe, Fort-de-France in Martinique and Saint-Denis de la Réunion.
To do this, Air France is putting 22 aircraft back into service. A total of 181 Air France aircraft will be in operation this summer, representing 90% of its fleet.
Lufthansa, meanwhile, has announced seasonal services from Frankfurt, including Paphos in Cyprus, Rijeka in Croatia, Lamezia in Italy and Varna in Bulgaria. From Munich, the German carrier will serve destinations such as Jerez in Spain and Chania, Mykonos and Zakynthos in Greece.
The low cost subsidiary of Lufthansa, Eurowings, flies from Frankfurt to Anchorage, Punta Cana, Zanzibar in Tanzania with a stopover in Mombasa in Kenya from July 24.