Ukraine International Airlines (UIA) has reported a 12.9% passenger increase in the first half of 2018 compared to the year-ago half, as a result of the carrier’s efforts to expand its fleet and further develop its Kiev Boryspil hub.

In the 2018 1H, UIA carried 3.53 million passengers on 28,900 flights, up 9% year-over-year. Transfer business at its Kiev hub reached a 52% (passenger) share. UIA operates more than 1,100 scheduled flights per week.

From January-June, seven new international and domestic flights were added to UIA’s route network including services from Kiev to Vinnytsia (Ukraine), Cairo (Egypt), Copenhagen (Denmark), from Kharkiv Ukraine) to Bergamo (Italy) and from Lviv (Ukraine) to Barcelona (Spain).

The long-haul route network was expanded with Delhi (India) and Toronto (Canada) services.

In the 1H, UIA added three Boeing 777-200ERs to its fleet, with a fourth aircraft expected to arrive in the 2H. UIA also received four 737-800s.

“UIA continues to follow its strategy and develop as a network carrier,” UIA communications director Evgeniya Satska said in a statement. “In 2018, we expect to set a record and carry as many as 8 million passengers,” she told ATW recently.

UIA operates 45 aircraft, including 30 737-700/800/900s. The fleet’s average age is 11.3 years.

Kurt Hofmann