Routes In Brief: Rolling Daily Updates (W/C Nov. 27, 2023)

volotea a320
Credit: Rob Finlayson

The latest airline route news, featuring network changes, schedule alterations, codeshares and interline agreements.

Dec. 1


Colombia’s civil aviation authority Aerocivil has authorized a request from Brazil’s GOL Linhas Aereas to operate a fifth freedom route between Bogota El Dorado International and Buenos Aires Ezeiza International. The airline plans to fly from Sao Paulo/Guarulhos to the Colombian capital and on to Argentina’s capital seven times per week using Boeing 737-8s.

China Eastern Airlines will operate seasonal service from Shanghai to Cairns, Australia, for Chinese New Year celebrations in 2024. There are 10 flights scheduled to operate from Feb. 1-18, operating 4X-weekly. Cairns Airport CEO Richard Barker says the seasonal service will bring a welcome economic boost during a traditionally slower period.

Czech airline Smartwings is to launch a route between Prague and Athens, Greece, during the summer 2024 season. Commencing May 31, 2024, the carrier will fly to the Greek capital twice a week, on Mondays and Fridays. The sector will be served by a Boeing 737 aircraft with a capacity of 189 seats. 

Argentinian LCC Flybondi has announced the extension of its Buenos Aires-Florianopolis in Brazil route until June 2024. During January and February, the route will operate three times per day on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays and 2X-daily on Wednesdays and Fridays. Frequencies will reduce to 2X-daily in March and 3X-weekly from April through June. “This year we were only two months without operating the route, which shows that it is a destination that works very well beyond the summer,” Flybondi Commercial Director Federico Pastori says.

Etihad Airways will offer Airbus A380 service between Abu Dhabi and New York John F. Kennedy International Airport from April 22, 2024. The aircraft will operate on one of the two daily Etihad flights to New York. The other daily flight will be operated by a Boeing 787-9. “Putting the A380 on the popular New York route makes sense as we satisfy customer demand for more capacity, further growing our expanding network,” Etihad CEO Antonoaldo Neves says.

Jetstar Asia has resumed direct flights from Singapore to Okinawa, Japan, becoming the only airline to fly nonstop between the cities. Service will be 3X-weekly using Airbus A320s. The LCC says it will offer 54,000 seats between the destinations each year, responding to “increasing demand and helping revitalize travel between Singapore and Japan.”

Hawaiian Airlines is opening a new nonstop service between Salt Lake City and Honolulu. Starting May 15, 2024, the carrier will operate the route using Airbus A321neo aircraft. Utah has one of the highest concentrations of Pacific Islanders in the country with about 60,000 residing in the state. Salt Lake City becomes Hawaiian's 16th gateway city in the continental U.S. Bill Wyatt, executive director at Salt Lake City International Airport, says: “Hawaii is not only a favorite destination for Utahns to vacation, but is also a popular location for family members to visit.”

EasyJet is expanding its base at Bristol Airport, England, with the addition of an 18th aircraft from next summer. The addition of an extra Airbus A320neo at the airport will enable the LCC to launch two new routes to Tivat in Montenegro and the Greek island of Skiathos. Both new routes will operate 2X-weekly.

Ryanair is adding routes two new Swedish routes in the summer of 2024, Flights will start from Dubrovnik, Croatia, to Stockholm Arlanda Airport and from Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina, to Goteborg Landvetter Airport. The new routes will be served twice a week from each airport, respectively, starting in April.

Nov. 29


EasyJet is to open a new three-aircraft base at England's Birmingham Airport (BHX) early with extra flights available from March 18, 2024. The LCC says that 16 new routes will be introduced, increasing the airline’s network from BHX to 29 destinations across the UK, Europe and North Africa. Flights to Antalya, Turkey, and Barcelona, Spain, will commence on March 18, operating twice and three times a week, respectively, while new 2X-weekly services to Alicante and Tenerife in Spain begin the next day. Flights to Larnaca, Cyprus, will start on March 20, operating 2X-weekly, with service to Malaga, Spain, and Enfidha, Tunisia, beginning the following day. Other new routes starting in April include flights to Berlin; Dalaman, Turkey; Jersey; Rhodes, Greece; and Sharm el Sheikh, Egypt.

Kenya Airways will resume direct flights to Mogadishu, Somalia, from Nairobi starting Feb. 14, 2024. The resumption follows the suspension of the route in August 2020 because of the pandemic. “This move aligns with the increasing business and the growing number of air travel between Kenya and Somalia,” says Julius Thairu, the carrier's chief commercial and customer officer.

Spanish carrier Volotea is introducing new nonstop flights between Venice, Italy, and Toulouse from April 4, 2024. Flights will be offered twice a week on Thursdays and Sundays. The move increases the LCC’s network from Venice Marco Polo Airport to 22 destinations.

South African Airways (SAA) has announced a new domestic seasonal service between Johannesburg and Port Elizabeth. Operations will start on Dec. 13 and run through March 31, 2024, and flights will be offered twice a day. SAA will provide competition for Airlink, CemAir and FlySafair.

Nov. 28


LOT Polish Airlines is to resume service to Greece’s capital Athens after an absence of more than two years. Flights from Warsaw will resume on April 11, 2024, operating daily using a mix of Boeing 737-800, 737-8 and Embraer 195 aircraft. The airline also plans to reinstate flights from Warsaw Radom to Preveza, Greece, and Tirana, Albania, as well as launch flights to Podgorica, Montenegro, and Ohrid, Macedonia, for the 2024 summer season.

Air Arabia is opening a new route to Phuket, Thailand, from Sharjah, United Arab Emirates. The nonstop service will start on Dec. 15, operating four times per week using Airbus A321s. Adel Al Ali, group chief executive officer of Air Arabia, says: "We are glad to introduce Phuket as the latest addition to our growing network, which will further expand our footprint in the Thai market.”

Norwegian has confirmed plans to launch another nonstop route from Gothenburg Landvetter Airport (GOT), Sweden, to Dubrovnik, Croatia. The addition of the new route means the LCC will start five new routes in total from GOT next spring. Flights to Dubrovnik will be 2X-weekly from May 1, 2024. “There is a great confidence in the Swedish air travel market, and Norwegian’s investment in additional direct routes from Göteborg Landvetter Airport is a clear sign of this,” says Elizabeth Axtelius, director for aviation business at Swedish airports operator Swedavia.

China’s Hainan Airlines has restarted flights to Boston, marking its return to the U.S. market for the first time since the pandemic. Service between Beijing Capital International Airport and Boston Logan International Airport will be 3X-weekly using Boeing 787-900s. The return leg operates via Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.

Nov. 27


South Africa’s Airlink is restarting a route between Cape Town and St. Helena Island, a remote volcanic island located 1,210 mi. west of the coast of southwestern Africa. Flights will begin in December 2024 and run through March 2025. The 1X-weekly service will supplement the existing weekly flights between St. Helena and Johannesburg.

South Korea’s Aero K has opened a new route between Cheongju International Airport and Clark International Airport, Philippines. Operations will be daily using 180-seat Airbus A320 equipment. The airline will be the sole operator of the route.

Volotea is adding four new destinations from its new base in Brest, France. From April 2024, the airline plans to begin flying to Olbia and Rome in Italy, as well as Malaga and Menorca in Spain. Each route will be served twice a week. The expansion comes after the Spanish carrier announced plans to base one A320 aircraft at the Brittany airport.

China Eastern Airlines will launch a seasonal direct service between Shanghai Pudong International Airport and Perth Airport, Australia, over Chinese New Year. The nonstop service will operate three times a week for a four-week period between Jan. 20, 2024, and Feb. 18. China Eastern launched a trial service between Shanghai and Perth in January 2020, but flights were soon suspended because of the pandemic.

Jetstar Aisa has resumed flights between Singapore and Osaka, Japan, via Manila, the Philippines, for the first time in three years. CEO Barathan Pasupathi says the LCC’s return to Japan is an important milestone. “Osaka is an exciting destination for travelers from Singapore and the Philippines, and this route demonstrates our commitment to providing more low-fare options for our customers across Asia,” he says. The Singaporean airline will operate five services a week between Singapore and Osaka using A320s, increasing to daily from Dec. 30.

Air Arabia has commenced its first nonstop flight from Ras Al Khaimah, United Arab Emirates, to Kozhikode, India. Frequencies will be 3X-weekly aboard A320s. “This new route not only strengthens our commitment to offering convenient and value-driven travel options between both cities but also reflects the strong tourism and trade ties between both nations,” Air Arabia group CEO Adel Al Ali says.

From Dec. 17, SalamAir is launching a route between Muscat, Oman, and Lucknow, India. Service will be 5X-weekly, operating on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Sundays. The airline says the route will provide onward connectivity via Muscat to the likes of Bahrain; Dammam and Jeddah, Saudi Arabia; and Dubai.

Firefly, a subsidiary of Malaysia Aviation Group, has operated its inaugural flight from Kota Kinabalu International Airport to Miri International Airport. This new route will be served 2X-weekly on Wednesdays and Fridays using Boeing 737-800s.

David Casey

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