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Airlines reduce their flights to Athens

07 January 2012 / 17:01:03  GRReporter
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Airlines are preparing for the worst months in recent years, since the reduction in income of Greek consumers, political instability, poor image of the country and the lack of flexibility in the prices of flight services, manifested by Athens International Airport, have created a negative climate and limited expectations of the market.

Greek and foreign airlines have changed their tactics and are focusing more on tourism and seasonal flights, by betting on the summer.

Meanwhile, however, a decrease of summer flights to Athens by foreign airlines has been reported.

Aegean Airlines leaves Berlin and wins Düsseldorf

From 8 January Aegean Airlines stops its flights from Athens to Tegel International Airport, which until now connected the Greek capital to Berlin with four flights a week. So, if the created vacuum is not filled by any other airline, the destination Athens - Berlin will be serviced only by Easyjet, which, however, flies to Schönefeld airport.

Aegean Airlines will remain the only airline operating flights Athens-Düsseldorf, after the withdrawal of Lufthansa on 21 January, which was operating five flights per week. The vacuum will be filled by Aegean Airlines, which provides 7 flights per week in the winter and summer periods.

Aegean Airlines also provides more "seasonal" and tourism-linked, and therefore safer, flights, such as the route Corfu - Brussels, which will start every day from 1 June until 30 September. In addition they have added the route Heraklion - Brussels, which will start on 28 May and continue until the end of October also with daily flights.

KLM airlines reduces its flights and Olympic increases them

Among the destinations for Western Europe Olympic Air has retained only the route Athens – Amsterdam, ​​where it competes with KLM and Transavia. Olympic will double the summer flights between the two capitals - instead of one flight per day it will carry out two.

And this is because KLM, which makes two flights per day from Athens to Amsterdam and back, will reduce its flights to one per day. However during the summer months the low cost Transavia airline will connect Athens and Amsterdam daily, instead of the three flights per week, which it was operating in winter.

Also during the summer months Olympic will increase its flights to and from Bucharest to nine per week, a route which is also serviced by the competitive Romanian airline Tarom.

During the summer months Olympic will also increase its flights to Cairo by one, reaching seven flights per week. The competitor on this route is Egypt Air. For its part, during the summer months Egypt Air will increase its flights to Athens from seven to ten flights per week.

Greek-Russian "battle"

During the summer months one more airline will push itself between the two competitors on the route Athens – Moscow, Aegean Airlines and Aeroflot. This is Siberia Airlines, better known as S7 Airlines, which will carry one flight per week. According to their summer programme Aegean Airlines will keep its four weekly flights, which it carries out during the winter as well.

However, the airline will face competition from Aeroflot, which will increase its summer flights to Athens from seven to eleven. The Greek company, however, will increase its flights on the route Thessaloniki - Moscow, because it bets on the Russian "invasion" in Chalkidiki.

Austrian Airlines will also reduce its flights to Athens and instead of the eleven weekly flights in summer 2011, it will operate seven. Aegean Airlines, which competes with Austrian Airlines on this route will increase its summer flights to Vienna to seven per week instead of the five (or six) it operates during the winter period.

Fewer foreign airlines flights to Athens

Finland's Blue1 will conduct one direct flight per week on the route Athens - Helsinki in the period 5 May to 29 September, and three flights per week between 5 July and 4 August. However, even during the peak period, the weekly flights will be reduced by one since in summer of 2011 they were four.

Also Croatia Airlines, which operates the route Athens – Dubrovnik, will reduce its flights from three to two. However, the same company will launch the new route Athens - Zagreb in April with two weekly flights, which will last until late summer.

Aerosvit will also reduce its summer flights and it will keep only one flight per week on the route Odessa - Athens instead of the two it had last year and Air Baltic will keep only four of the five flights it used to operate in the summer of 2011.

Air Canada will reduce its summer flights on the route Montreal - Athens to two per week instead of the three it operated in 2011 and will not increase its flights from Toronto, as intended, but will keep them at four per week.

U.S. United airlines cancelled its summer direct flights to Athens, which it was intending to start in 2011. Flights to Athens will be serviced through a transfer in different European cities from other airlines.

Also planned, however, are some new routes.  In May the Italian airline Air One will launch, three new weekly flights to Athens from Venice, and MEA (Middle East Airlines) will increase its summer flights from Beirut to Athens to eight per week instead of the six it operated in 2011.

Tags: Greece Athens Thessaloniki flights Aegean Airlines Olympic Air KLM Toronto US Air
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