Tag Archives: Airbus A321-211

Small Planet Airlines to open two new European bases

Small Planet Airlines (Poland) Airbus A321-211 SP-HAX (msn 2903) ZRH (Rolf Wallner). Image: 934857.

Small Planet Airlines will open two new European bases in 2018: in Chania on the Greek island of Crete and in Stockholm-Arlanda airport which serves the Swedish capital. Together with major Scandinavian tour operators, Small Planet Airlines will perform flights to Albania, Croatia, Greece, and the Canary Islands.


The flights will commence in April 2018, and will be performed by two Airbus A320 aircraft. The airline plans to operate flights twice a day and transport 170 000 passengers during the seven months of the summer season.

Small Planet Airlines chose the Greek island of Crete as its new base due to its geographical location that will enable the airline to expand its route-map and reach multiple Scandinavian airports from one base in the Mediterranean.

In the Summer 2017, Small Planet Airlines utilized 22 Airbus aircraft from 9 European bases. The airline plans to operate a fleet of 28 aircraft in the year 2018.

Top Copyright Photo (all others by Small Planet): Small Planet Airlines (Poland) Airbus A321-211 SP-HAX (msn 2903) ZRH (Rolf Wallner). Image: 934857.

Small Planet (Poland) aircraft slide show:

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TAP to offer flights from Porto to Barcelona, London City and Ponta Delgada and boost its services to Brazil and Canada

CS-TJH with new titles and tail logo

TAP Postugal (Lisbon) has announced it will add new routes:

  • TAP will again fly from Porto to Milan and Barcelona, after the suspension of the route in 2016, offering a greater number of flights
  • The airline also announces new routes from Porto to London City and Ponta Delgada
  • TAP’s operations out of Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport grow by an additional 41 flights every week
  • The airline also announces 10 flights per week between Lisbon and Florence
  • And a further four flights per week to São Paulo and one additional flight to Brasilia and to Belo Horizonte in Brazil, and one to Toronto, Canada

TAP Air Portugal will grow its operations from Porto Airport over the coming year. The airline has started two flights a day to Barcelona and to Milan, reinstating and intensifying two routes that were suspended in 2016 as part of the operation redesign carried out at that time.

In addition to reinstating these routes, TAP has also announced the launch of new routes from Porto, with six flights per week to London City airport and a new daily service to Ponta Delgada.

With these new flights, which start on March 25, 2018, TAP is introducing a total of 41 new services per week between Porto and four different cities. These flights will be available to book as soon as the operational details have been finalised. The two daily flights to Barcelona will depart Porto at 6.30am (TP1030) and 7.35pm (TP1031). The flights to Milan will depart Porto at 6.30am (TP818) and 5.55pm (TP816). The six flights a week between Porto and London City will leave Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport at 12.05pm (TP354), arriving in London at 2.20pm, with the return flight leaving London at 2.50pm (TP353), arriving in Porto at 5.10pm.

Another new flight on TAP’s summer timetable from Porto is the creation of a daily flight to Ponta Delgada. TP1861 will depart Porto at 1.20pm, arriving in Ponta Delgada at 2.45pm. The return flight (TP1866) will take off at 3.35pm, landing in Porto at 6.50pm, both local times.

From Lisbon to Florence

TAP also announces the launch of a direct service between Lisbon and Florence, with 10 flights per week, beginning on June 10, 2018. Florence joins Rome, Bologna, Milan and Venice to become the company’s fifth destination in Italy. This demonstrates TAP’s commitment to the Italian market, which is important not just for point-to-point traffic, but also as a way of generating traffic to other TAP destinations through its Lisbon hub.

The service between Lisbon and Florence will have two different timetables. On Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays the flight will leave Lisbon at 7.05am, arriving in Florence at 10.50am. Flights will depart Florence at 11.35am, arriving in Lisbon at 1.35pm. On Mondays, Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays there will also be flights leaving Lisbon at 3.50pm, arriving in Florence at 7.35pm. Flights will then depart Florence at 8.20pm, arriving in Lisbon at 10.20pm.

More flights to Brazil and Canada

From June 1, 2018, TAP is also boosting its long-haul operation with four more flights each week to São Paulo and one more to Brasilia and Belo Horizonte in Brazil and to Toronto in Canada.

Next year the company intends to offer flights between Lisbon and Nouakchott, capital of Mauritania, a service that is currently awaiting government authorization.

Copyright Photo: The pictured TAP Airbus A321-212 is wearing the revised “Air Portugal” titles instead of “TAP Portugal” on the tail. In addition, the web address has been changed from www.flytap.com to flytap.com with some additional touch of color. TAP Portugal – Air Portugal Airbus A321-211 CS-TJH (msn 2270) MUC (Arnd Wolf). Image: 940450.

TAP Portugal aircraft slide show:

IAG confirms the acquisition of Niki, will be rebranded

Niki Luftfahrt (flyNiki.com) Airbus A321-211 OE-LET (msn 3830) TFS (Paul Bannwarth). Image: 926835.

International Airlines Group (IAG) has announced formally it will buy the assets of the Austrian airline Niki, which was formerly part of the Air Berlin group, for €20 million and provide liquidity to Niki of up to €16.5 million.

The transaction is being made by a newly formed subsidiary of Vueling which will be incorporated as an Austrian company and run initially as a separate operation. It is subject to customary closing conditions such as the EC competition approval.

The assets include up to 15 Airbus A320 family aircraft and an attractive slot portfolio at various airports including Vienna, Dusseldorf, Munich, Palma and Zurich.

The new company plans to employ approximately 740 former NIKI employees to run the operation.

Willie Walsh, IAG chief executive, said: “Niki was the most financially viable part of Air Berlin and its focus on leisure travel means it’s a great fit with Vueling. This deal will enable Vueling to increase its presence in Austria, Germany and Switzerland and provide the region’s consumers with more choice of low cost air travel”.

More details about the new subsidiary’s branding and route network will be provided in due course, when appropriate.

Copyright Photo: The Niki brand will be retired. Niki Luftfahrt (flyNiki.com) Airbus A321-211 OE-LET (msn 3830) TFS (Paul Bannwarth). Image: 926835.

Niki aircraft slide show:

DAE to lease two new Airbus A320s to Hongtu Airlines

Hongtu Airlines commences operations on May 21, 2016

Dubai Aerospace Enterprise Ltd. (DAE) (Dubai) has announced that its leasing division, DAE Capital and Yunnan Hongtu Airlines of China has completed a lease agreement for two new Airbus A320-200 aircraft. These modern, fuel efficient planes will be delivered in 2018 and are part of a direct order DAE has with Airbus. The aircraft will come equipped with CFM 56-5B4/3 PIP engines.

This latest addition to the Hongtu A320 family fleet will assist the carrier as it looks to capitalize on China’s increasing domestic demand for leisure and business air travel, offering a high-end, customized service to its passengers. Hongtu currently has a fleet of three Airbus A320 family aircraft and operates flights to 10 domestic destinations.

Hongtu Airlines is a Chinese airline operating domestic flights from its Kunming Changshui International Airport base in Yunnan Province. The airline launched operations on May 21, 2016.

Hongtu Airlines currently operates a pair of Airbus A321s (above) and a single A320.

Copyright Photo: Hongtu Airlines Airbus A321-211 F-WTDB (B-8318) (msn 6268) TLS (Paul Bannwarth). Image: 933073.

Lufthansa makes further concessions to EU Commission, will no longer pursue Niki

Niki Luftfahrt (flyNiki.com) Airbus A321-211 OE-LES (msn 3504) ZRH (Paul Bannwarth). Image: 934292.

Lufthansa has made further concessions on December 13, 2017 in the course of the intended acquisition of parts of the Air Berlin Group. The transaction is currently being examined by the EU Commission as the responsible merger control authority. In the so-called Phase One assessment, Lufthansa had already offered extensive commitments in particular by giving up slots. However, the Commission considers this to be insufficient and has clearly indicated that an acquisition of Niki and its integration into the Eurowings Group would currently not be approved. Based on this assessment, a takeover of Niki by Eurowings is no longer being pursued. 

Lufthansa has informed both Air Berlin and its administrator that it intends to close the transaction excluding the acquisition of Niki.

With regard to the still intended takeover of Luftfahrtgesellschaft Walter (LGW), Lufthansa would give up numerous slots in order to obtain merger clearance in Phase One. The revised commitments will be submitted to the EU Commission today.

The Lufthansa Group maintains its plan of expanding its point-to-point business increasingly through organic growth of the Eurowings Group.

A share of the agreed purchase price for Niki has already been transferred to the company as bridge financing. The unpaid purchase price components will now be used for the organic capacity expansion in Niki’s markets. Economically, this leads to a comparable result for the Lufthansa Group.

Copyright Photo: Niki Luftfahrt (flyNiki.com) Airbus A321-211 OE-LES (msn 3504) ZRH (Paul Bannwarth). Image: 934292.

Air Canada suspends service to San Juan and St. Maarten

Air Canada Airbus A321-211 C-GJWI (msn 1772) YYZ (TMK Photography). Image: 937007.

Air Canada and Air Canada rouge are suspending winter seasonal service to both San Juan, Puerto Rico and St. Maarten due to hurricane damage and the long recovery for both islands. The airline was planning to operate to San Juan from both Montreal and Toronto (Pearson) this winter as well as Toronto – St. Maarten.

The airline is planning to resume winter service to both destinations in the winter 2018/19 season according to Airline Route.

Copyright Photo: Air Canada Airbus A321-211 C-GJWI (msn 1772) YYZ (TMK Photography). Image: 937007.

Ural Airlines to launch flights to Switzerland

Ural Airlines Airbus A321-211 VQ-BKG (msn 991) AYT (Ton Jochems). Image: 907228.

Ural Airlines has announced the opening of weekly scheduled flights to Switzerland. The routing Zhukovsky – Geneva – Zhukovsky will be operating during the winter season from December 29, 2017 until March 23, 2018 on Fridays.

Copyright Photo: Ural Airlines Airbus A321-211 VQ-BKG (msn 991) AYT (Ton Jochems). Image: 907228.