airBaltic is gearing up to restart its operations as soon as next week. The airline will be operating Airbus A220-300 from Tallinn Airport to four European cities. The Latvian flag carrier will also begin operations from its base in Riga from 18th May as it slowly builds back its operation.
airBaltic reinstates international routes from Tallinn
Just one week ago, Latvian airline airBaltic received vital funding, nearly US$270m, to help it through the coronavirus. This week, the airline is proving that it has the strength to carry on. Today (14th May), airBaltic announced that it would be reinstating some of its pivotal routes to Baltic countries and further afield.
The airline announced the news on Twitter, and from 18th May will fly to Amsterdam, Oslo, and Copenhagen. In addition, from 25th May, the airline will return to Vilnius in Lithuania.
We are happy to announce the resuming of @airBaltic direct flights from Tallinn Airport as of May 18. Our flight operations will follow the recommendations issued by authorities as the safety and health of our passengers and employees stand above all: https://t.co/eziy69xlMu pic.twitter.com/XSgFu2hDcA
— airBaltic (@airBaltic) May 14, 2020
airBaltic’s timetable on these routes are as follows:
- Tallinn – Amsterdam: starting 18th May, offered once daily.
- Tallinn – Copenhagen: starting 18th May, offered once per day on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.
- Tallinn – Oslo: starting 21st May, offered twice per day on Thursdays and Sundays.
In a recent press release, the CEO of airBaltic Martin Gauss said:
“Until the crisis began, we were the strongest carrier in Tallinn, providing the best connectivity to our Estonian passengers. Now we return with a clear target to maintain our position in Estonia and the Baltics. By focusing on an all-Airbus A220-300 fleet, we are well-positioned for the restart in Tallinn.”
Gauss is confident in the airline’s strategy and hopes that passengers welcome the opportunity to return to the sky. To ensure passenger safety and confidence, airBaltic will offer passengers a complimentary face mask and two disinfectant wipes when they board.
airBaltic increases its operation in Riga
While airBaltic’s is a measured approach, the airline is taking opportunities where it can to supplement its schedule. The carrier also has plans to relaunch out of Riga on 18th May.
The airline will fly from Riga to Tallinn once daily from Monday. As well as this, airBaltic will restart operations between Riga and Vilnius in Lithuania. This route will also operate once daily from 18th May. What’s more, the Latvian airline will even be flying from Riga to Frankfurt and Riga to Oslo between 18th May and 9th June.
All of airBaltic’s route schedules have been made in line with national guidance. The airline has received authorization to fly out of Tallinn already and has received approval from the Latvian government for its operations within the Baltic countries. However, it is still waiting for permission to be granted for its routes from Riga to Frankfurt and Olso.
Coming out of the coronavirus with a fighting chance of survival
The fact that airBaltic is plowing ahead with its operations when the coronavirus still debilitates so many airlines demonstrates its strength within the market. The airline has been focused on manifesting its return. On 23rd April, its Supervisory Board approved a new business plan called Destination 2025 CLEAN. The strategy outlines how airBaltic plans to move forward in the coming years.
It will start with an all-Airbus A220-300 fleet of 22 aircraft. This means that the airline will leave its three Boeing 737-300 and 12 Dash 8-400s parked. The airline will, naturally, reduce its capacity for 2020 and 2021 and slowly grow its fleet. By 2023, it hopes to have 50 A220-300 aircraft.
The next few weeks and even months look promising for airBaltic.
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