Play Airlines Business Plan



The new low cost carrier operating flights between Iceland and Europe is scheduled to debut in the United States in 2022. Play Airlines’ future business plan will advance flights to destinations on the east coast of the United States from Iceland with a connection to the Europe in the summer of next year.

Two months after Play Airline launched in Europe in June 2021, the Icelandic carrier applied for permission to fly to and from the US region from the Department of Transportation. The decision to expand the airline’s reach in North America was Play Airlines’ initial business plan. The low-cost carrier will attempt to run a successful business among North American travelers, a market where its predecessor, Wow Air, failed.

PLAY A321; Photo by PLAY

Play Airlines plans for North America

Although the authorization and exemption authority of the foreign air carrier does not specify any route of the request, the CEO of Play Airlines, Birgir Jonsson, clearly explained Play Airlines’ business plan in the US market. The Icelandic carrier intends to operate in destinations such as Boston, New York and Washington in the initial phase with the fourth possible destination, Toronto; we could see the expansion of the service network based on its success in the coming days. Jonsson, who was also deputy general manager of Wow Air, saw airlines fly to 17 destinations across the United States and Canada, including popular destinations like Cincinnati, Pittsburgh and St Louis, during the Wow Air climax. . While there has been no indication that Wow Air’s successor will follow a network similar to its predecessor, Mr Jansson has hinted that some surprises may be hidden among the plans for the route network.

The Icelandic carrier began its flights to the European region in June 2021 with seven routes between Reykjavik and Europe, which were later extended to nine routes by August. Plan’s destinations include popular vacation spots like the Canary Islands of Gran Canaria and Tenerife. Play Airlines has a limited, small market in Iceland. Its strategy to cover the North American market will generate a high volume of air travel demand at its Reykjavik hub to make the carrier’s ultra-low cost business model work. Play Airlines’ business plan depends on its operations, mainly with full flights where more than 90% of the seats are occupied. The low-cost carrier’s full seat coverage plan hasn’t moved forward easily enough so far; In its first full month of service in July, the 9,9,899 passenger carrier Play Airlines which just filled 42% of the seats in operation, the airline expects to fill the seat up to 72% by the end 2021 given the difficult travel circumstances created by the covid-19 epidemic.

Play’s 192-seat Airbus A321 Neo jets in its fleet are expected to be key players in the airline’s route expansion business plan. The low-cost carrier’s North American network expansion plan will allow Airbus’ narrow-body aircraft to fly up to four segments per day, increasing the efficiency of the airline’s fleet and providing Wider connectivity options to customers. If Play Airlines’ “fast-track” business plan is successful, the airline is likely to compete with Icelandic, Iceland’s national carrier, on at least some of the routes. The national carrier served up to 10 destinations on the North American network during the summer of 2021.

Aside from competing with the national carrier, Play Airlines will also face stiff competition from other big fish in the industry. Many major transatlantic airlines, including American Airlines, United Airlines, Air France, Lufthansa, are planning robust schedules for the coming year, where the travel rate is expected to rebound after going through two years of dry season. JetBlue already launched its long-awaited flight routes to London in August 2021. Additionally, Lufthansa’s new long-haul affiliate, low-cost carrier Eurowings Discover, and Norwegian Air’s restart bot, Norse Atlantic Airways, are planning their debut in the US market next year. .

Nonetheless, Play is quite confident in its business prospects; During the presentation to investors in June 2021, the low-cost carrier outlined its ambitious business growth plan, which predicted a single year of loss in 2021. The Icelandic carrier predicts it will make at least $ 4 million in profit in 2022 when the demand for air travel will slowly return to its former glory and achieve a profit of about $ 43 million by the middle of the decade.


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