Category Archives: Volotea

Volotea to connect Gilbraltar with Bilbao

Volotea has announced the launch of a route connecting Gibraltar Airport (UK) with Bilbao (Spain). This new connection will operate twice a week on Tuesdays and Fridays.

The connection between Gibraltar and Bilbao, operated by an Airbus A319, will start on  July 2, 2021 offering around 8,200 seats between July and September. Volotea will be the only airline to connect Gibraltar with a Spanish city.

In other news, Volotea is also adding two new routes from Olbia:

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Volotea adds its first Airbus A320, ex-Alaska N621VA

Volotea has added its first Airbus A320. N621VA is pictured landing at Palma de Mallorca after its delivery flight from San Antonio to Bangor, Glasgow and Palma.

Ex-Alaska Airlines N621VA (msn 2616) (above) is the first Airbus A320 for Volotea. The airframe will become EC-NNZ.
Copyright Photo : Javier Rodriguez.
Volotea aircraft slide show:

Volotea to add up to 19 Airbus A320s to expand its A319 fleet

Volotea has accelerated its fleet transformation for Summer 2021, becoming a 100% Airbus operator, phasing out entirely its Boeing 717s and adding 15 to 19 Airbus A320s. The company has already sourced 15 A320s and will add up to 4 more based on last minute summer demand.

With the addition of the 180-seat Airbus A320s, Volotea will increase its fleet capacity by 15% of seats.

Volotea evolves into a single fleet operator, in a move favoring the European manufacturer Airbus, through the early retirement of its fourteen Boeing 717 aircraft and their replacement by 15 to 19 Airbus A320s.

The fleet renewal is part of Volotea’s review of its strategical, financial, and operational plans in the context of the crisis generated by the COVID-19 pandemic. The company has already sourced 15 A320s and will add up to 4 more based on last minute summer demand.

Volotea was founded in 2011 by Carlos Muñoz and Lázaro Ros, previously founders of Vueling, and is one of the fastest-growing independent airlines in Europe, increasing year-on-year its fleet, routes served, and seats offered. Since its start, Volotea has carried more than 30 million passengers across Europe.

Volotea is based in 16 European mid-sized capitals: Asturias, Athens, Bilbao, Bordeaux, Cagliari, Genoa, Hamburg, Lyon (opening in 2021), Marseille, Nantes, Naples, Palermo, Strasbourg, Toulouse, Venice and Verona. Volotea currently flies to 90 cities across 14 countries and plans to fly to a new country in 2021 by opening routes to Algeria from France.

In 2020, Volotea signed an agreement with Bureau Veritas, a world leader in testing, inspection and certification, in order to verify the successful implementation of health and hygiene measures. Volotea is the world’s first airline to have its preventive measures against COVID-19 audited by Bureau Veritas.

Volotea carried 3.8 million passengers in 2020 with a 90.7% load factor

Volotea reported on its traffic figures for 2020:

Volotea recorded satisfactory figures in an unprecedented year for aviation, especially in Q3 with 83% of activity compared to 2019.

The company’s ability to switch its network to domestic traffic allowed Volotea to reduce only 9% of its operated routes versus previous year.

The airline also achieved a punctuality of 91.7% (OTP15 +14,6 pts versus 2019) and a customer recommendation of more than 90%.

The airline continued;

Volotea published its results for the full year 2020, drawing up balanced figures. Last year, the airline’s strategy has been to quickly redefine its network by shifting predominantly to a domestic offer (86% of its network), in all the countries where it operates. This flexible strategy, combined with the best operational standards, allowed Volotea to achieve very satisfactory results in terms of seat load, punctuality and customer recommendation rate.

Against a backdrop of the health crisis and the trend in the aviation industry (which has seen an 80% drop in its business volume), Volotea has shared satisfactory figures for 2020, especially in Q3 when the airline registered 83% of activity versus the previous year. Volotea has been able to maintain strong connectivity on its network, albeit readjusted with a domestic programme, offering more than 290 routes. The reworking of its strategy enabled the airline to carry 3.8 M passengers over the year with a 90.7% seat load.

Volotea also increased its punctuality rate by 14.6% (OTP 15 of 91,7%), bringing its customer satisfaction rating to over 90%.

“ We feel very proud of these figures, very positive given the current context. Volotea’s reliability and flexibility, and its ability to offer a brand-new domestic network in record time have been key. These results, added to the syndicated loan of 150 million euros signed during the summer, help Volotea enter 2021 in a strong position, to benefit from the expected pick up of short-haul leisure traffic in Spring/Summer, as vaccination advances.” said Carlos Muñoz, Volotea’s Founder and CEO.

 Volotea’s 2020 figures:

  • Flights operated: 30,600 (-49% versus 2019 / in comparison to -56% for the industry in Europe)
  • Passengers: 3.8 million
  • Routes operated: 293
  • Seat load: 90.7%
  • Punctuality OTP 15: 91.7% (+14.6 points versus 2019)
  • Customer recommendation rate: 90.6% (+4 points versus 2019)

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Volotea operates its last Boeing 717 revenue flights, the last 717 operator in Europe

Volotea Boeing 717-2BL EI-FCB (msn 55191) NTE (Paul Bannwarth). Image: 927776.

Volotea on January 10, 2021 operated its last Boeing 717s for the last time.

EC-MGT operated its last flight as V7 549 from Turin to Palermo. EC-MGT was the last to be ferried to Venice on January 11, 2021.

The last revenue flight to land on January 10, 2021 was flight V7 1514 from Punta Raisi, Italy to Genoa, Italy with EI-FCB (top).

The eight remaining Boeing 717-200s have been ferried to Venice before being sent to desert storage, probably in California.

The airline operated 19 individual 717s over the course of operations of the type.

Top Copyright Photo: Volotea Boeing 717-2BL EI-FCB (msn 55191) NTE (Paul Bannwarth). Image: 927776.

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Volotea launches 10 new routes, offers more seats than last year for Christmas holidays

Volotea made this announcement:

Volotea has just launched its commercial offer for the 2020 Christmas holidays. The airline enhances its network in France, Spain and Italy with the creation of 10 new routes and an increase in the frequency of existing connections. A total of 143 routes will be operated in all its markets, including 60 exclusive routes. More than half a million seats will be offered, an increase of 33% compared to 2019.

Volotea, the airline of mid- and small-sized European cities, has put up for sale its offer for the period from December 17, 2020 to January 11, 2021. Volotea has reworked its network and developed its domestic offer (82% of the seats offered over the period). The airline has also increased the frequency of its winter routes and created 10 new connections, each operated twice a week (Lanzarote – Oviedo; Bilbao – Granada; Granada – Oviedo; Las Palmas – Oviedo; Lille – Nantes; Barcelona – Verona; Genoa – Paris; Luxembourg – Toulouse, Nantes – Perpignan and Lille – Perpignan; the latter two being summer routes operated for the first time in winter).

In total, more than half a million of seats will be offered over the Christmas period, 33% more than last year.

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Volotea opens a new base at Naples

Volotea opened its sixth Italian base on July 3, in Naples.

Following last October’s announcement, the company has now based two Airbus A319s at the Campanian airport. The move will enable the airline to consolidate its presence in time for the summer season by focusing mainly on domestic flights, with several routes to Greece also running. Before becoming a Volotea base, Naples was already the first airport in Italy, and second in the Volotea network, in volume of available seats. Passengers will be able to travel from Naples to 17 destinations – 9 in Italy and 8 abroad.

With the opening of the new Naples base, Volotea will consolidate its national services departing from the airport, offering passengers more frequent flights to Catania (11 flights per week), Genoa (5 flights per week), Turin (2 flights per week), Trieste (2 flights per week this summer and up to 6 in September), Verona (2 flights per week this summer and up to 6 in September) and Olbia (7 flights per week). For summer 2020, the network of domestic destinations passengers can fly to from Naples will also include Alghero (new for 2020, with 2 flights per week), Cagliari (6 flights per week) and Palermo (2 daily flights). Fans of Greek holidays will be able to travel from Naples to Mykonos (up to 5 flights per week), Santorini (4 flights per week), Heraklion, Zante and Skiathos (3 flights per week for the three destinations), Rodi (2 flights per week), Cephalonia and PrevezaLefkada (one flight per week).

The two Airbus A319 aircraft will be allocated to Naples.

Naples is the latest addition to the airline’s network of Italian bases, which already included Venice, Verona, Palermo, Genoa and Cagliari.

For 2020, Volotea is adding six aircraft Airbus 319s and 62 new routes to offer a line-up of 354 short-haul city-pairs among 96 medium and small-sized airports in 15 countries at very competitive prices.

Volotea operates its network with 39 aircraft, 25 Airbus A319s and 14 Boeing 717s, based in 16 European mid-sized capitals: Venice, Nantes, Bordeaux, Palermo, Strasbourg, Asturias, Verona, Toulouse, Genoa, Bilbao, Marseille, Athens, Cagliari, Lyon, Naples and Hamburg.

Volotea’s Hamburg base has been opened to operate Airbus’ shuttle service, recently awarded. Bases in Lyon and Naples are to be launched in 2020.

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Volotea takes off with its summer 2020 schedule

Volotea re-started its operations on June 16 after three months of hibernation due to Covid-19— with a first flight of the Airbus shuttle connection between Hamburg and Toulouse.

The airline has also revealed the resumption of its operations in France (June 17), Italy (June 18), Greece (June 18) and Spain (June 25).

This Summer, Volotea will offer a total of 274 routes among which 75 are new and 122 are exclusive.

Volotea has restarted today its Airbus Charter Service between Toulouse and Hamburg. With this service, Volotea provides Airbus employees with a service to commute between Airbus’ two most important facility sites, with a frequency of four flights per day. The take-off of the Airbus Shuttle officially marks the return of the airline operations.

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Volotea launches 40 new routes

Volotea has unveiled an extended network for 2020 with a total of 40 new routes across its markets.

In Italy, France, Spain and Greece, the airline is launching a new offer to boost domestic flights, strengthening connections between the continent and islands and increasing travelers’ choices for local summer holidays. 15 new routes will be launched in France, another 15 in Spain, 8 in Italy and 2 in Greece. From the 40 new routes offered, a total of 15 are exclusive. The airline will also fly to 4 new airports previously unserved by the airline: Beauvais in France, Santiago de Compostela and Granada in Spain and Bologna in Italy.

France: In France, Volotea offers a total of 15 new routes, among which 5 are exclusive. All the new routes are connecting to holiday destinations in France. Volotea now links almost all of its cities in the Hexagon with Corsica. The airline will also include Beauvais among its new airports for 2020.

Italy: In Italy, Volotea launches 8 new routes, among which 5 are exclusive, allowing the airline to multiply connections between Sicily, Sardinia and mainland Italy. The airline will also count Bologna among its new airports for 2020.

Spain: In Spain, Volotea reinforces its presence by offering 15 new routes, among which 5 are exclusive. The airline is boosting connections with the Balearic and Canary Islands. With these new routes, Volotea doubles its routes offer in Spain and will fly to two new airports: Santiago de Compostela and Granada. Volotea will double its presence with a second aircraft at its Asturias and Bilbao bases.

Greece: In Greece, Volotea launches two new routes, connecting Athens to Corfu, and Santorini to Thessaloniki. At the same time, the airline will densify the frequency of its flights between mainland and islands.

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Volotea will open new bases in Spain in 2021 following an agreement with IAG

Volotea will open between two and four bases in Spain, following the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed with IAG, whereby Volotea would operate some routes flown by Iberia and/or Air Europa, who would transfer the necessary slots.

This agreement is framed in the context of the acquisition by Iberia of 100% of Air Europa. To facilitate the buyout approval by the Competition Authorities of the EC, Iberia has proposed Volotea as a “Fix-it-first remedy”, by which, following the acquisition of Air Europa by Iberia, Volotea would start to operate the routes in which the EC might consider necessary the introduction of a new competitor. The EC must firstly approve the suitability of this solution. Volotea is legally advised in this process by law firm Pérez-Llorca.

Volotea is the ideal company as a “Fix-it-first remedy” since it is a Spanish airline independent from IAG, has a recognized leadership, demonstrated operative capabilities -over 260,000 flights and close to 30 million passengers flown since 2012- and a highly competitive profile, in complex markets. Volotea also stands out for its sales capabilities through all distribution channels as travel agencies and tour operators, their code sharing ability like the existing one with TAP Air Portugal, which positions it as an alternative for connection from Madrid.

Volotea is one of the fastest growing independent airlines in Europe, increasing its fleet, the number of routes it operates and its seats offering, every year. If the EC approves this proposal, Volotea will strengthen significantly its growth in Spain, with the opening of two to four new bases and the increase of its connectivity, placing itself amongst the main five airlines operating in Spain.

Founded by Carlos Muñoz and Lázaro Ros in 2011, Volotea has grown rapidly, profitably and sustainably over time, demonstrating its management capabilities. It has yearly revenues of over €500 million, achieves recurring profit uninterruptedly since 2015 and will transport between 8.5 and 9 million passengers this year, with a seat-load factor of over 94 percent. Additionally, the punctuality index of Volotea is amongst the best in the industry, with 88.5% in 2020, operating over 354 routes from its 16 bases in five European countries, and employing 1,500 people. The history of Volotea is that of constant progression since its foundation, with the opening of 30-60 routes and between 1 and 3 bases, each year. Volotea has never closed any of its bases.

Volotea, which focused initially their business model in the connection of European small and mid-sized cities with direct flights, later expanded its connectivity with larger cities in Europe.

Athens was, in 2018, the first large hub in which Volotea opened a base, which has since then grown significantly. Over the last four years it has also improved its connectivity with Madrid and intends to open two new routes this year from Barcelona. The agreement with IAG poses a unique opportunity to continue growing in this direction, increasing its presence in a great hub such as Madrid.

An increase in routes and slots will also improve the connectivity between Autonomous Communities of Spain, specially the Canary and Balearic Islands, and also Galicia, Basque Country and Asturias. In Spain, Volotea operates 92 routes and flew 1.4 million passengers in 2019. The growth of Volotea’s activity in Spain will translate in an increase of its fleet, made up of 39 aircraft, and by the growth in staff, currently of 1,500 people in 2020.

Overall, Volotea operated 319 routes in 2019 and will reach this year 354 routes, with the opening of three new bases in Lyon, Naples and Hamburg, being present in a total of 96 airports in 15 countries. Volotea transported 7.6 million passengers in 2019 and estimates they will fly between 8.5 and 9 million passengers this year.

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