With its clean-looking green and white livery, Norwegian startup airline Flyr today completed its first commercial flight. Flight number FOX408 departed Oslo Airport (OSL) at 11:30 for the two-hour flights to Tromsø Airport (TOS) in the far north of Norway.
The aircraft used for the airline’s first flights was an eight-and-a-half-year-old Boeing 737-800 that used to be flown by Turkish low-cost carrier Pegasus Airlines. According to RadarBox.com, the aircraft was on the ground in Tromsø until 15:15 and is now on route back to the Norwegian capital.
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Flyr will be a no-frills airline
Although it might be questionable to be starting a new airline when many are struggling to survive, the Norwegian startup feels different. Created by some of Norway’s most prominent aviation executives, Flyr aims to tackle SAS, Norwegian, Widerøe, and other competitors head-on.
Flyr believes that, thanks to the countries geography and its citizen’s high standard of living, Norway has room for another airline. Embracing the latest technology similar to UBER and Lyft, Flyr is based on a smartphone app. So anything a Flyr customer wants to do, whether it’s paying for tickets, changing flights, or anything else involved, must be done through the app.
Former Braathen’s owner and now Flyr founder Erik G. Braathen says the name Flyr was chosen for its simplicity and reflects the business model Flyr wants to share with its customers.
Flyr should do well domestically
Flyr also took aim at its Norwegian rivals and Wizz Air by making it clear that Flyr will only hire a Norwegian-based crew and put them on Norwegian contracts. This seems like a direct swipe at low-cost carrier Wizz Air. The airline’s attempt at using low-paid non-unionized employee’s caused such an uproar in Norway that Wizz Air is now giving up its domestic Norwegian routes.
Based at Oslo Gardermoen Airport (OSL), Flyr will serve the following domestic destinations:
Internationally, Flyr wants to appeal to Norwegians looking for a sunny Mediterranean vacation by flying to three of the Med’s top summer holiday destinations, Nice, Alicante, and Malaga. It is no surprise that Flyr chose Alicante as a destination, with the town of L’Alfàs del Pi having more foreign-born residents than Spanish. The largest group of foreigners in L’Alfàs del Pi are Norwegian. They have two schools and two elderly care centers that are paid for by the Norwegian government.
The Flyr fleet
To start with, Flyr plans to operate a fleet of two Boeing 737-800 aircraft, and given Flyr’s no-frills approach; we can expect each to have a 189 passenger all-economy layout. Norwegian flyers are very familiar with the Boeing 737-800 as it was the backbone of Norwegians short-haul fleet.
When speaking with Norway’s English language website Life in Norway about why they chose the Boeing 737-800 Flyr founder, Erik G. Braathen said:
“It’s an aircraft that we in management have a lot of experience with. Also, there is simulator capacity in Norway and crew and mechanics with ample experience and competence.”
With Wizz Air having pulled out of flying domestically in Norway, Flyr should be able to take up the slack. So how well do you think Flyr will do? Please tell us your thoughts in the comments.