What Pandemic? Wizz Air’s Optimistic Summer Sees 143 New Routes

Wizz Air will launch 143 additional routes this summer, resulting from numerous new bases and airports added to its route map. The carrier is determined to emerge from the crisis as a much more formidable competing force.

Wizz Air A320
Wizz Air will launch 143 routes this summer, with more likely to come. Photo: Getty Images.

Wizz Air has taken a very different approach during coronavirus than many airlines in Europe. It has expanded rapidly, showing real optimism, with large numbers of new routes added due to multiple new bases joining its network. Since the pandemic struck, new bases include the following, with some starting this summer:

  1. Abu Dhabi
  2. Bacau
  3. Bari
  4. Burgas
  5. Cardiff
  6. Catania
  7. Doncaster
  8. Dortmund
  9. Larnaca
  10. Lviv
  11. London Gatwick
  12. Milan Malpensa
  13. Oslo Gardermoen
  14. Palermo
  15. Sarajevo
  16. St Petersburg
  17. Tirana

Additionally, large numbers of new airports have been added, with Wizz Air’s network rising from 146 airports in summer 2019 to 180 in summer 2021. Some are new bases, mentioned above, along with the likes of Alexandria, Almaty, Ancona, Brindisi, Cagliari, Chania, Dalaman, Genoa, Lanzarote, Luxor, Olbia, Mykonos, Pescara, Preveza, Sohag, Sharm El Sheikh, and Skellefteå. Two of these, Luxor and Sohag, have today (April 12th) been announced from Abu Dhabi.

Wizz Air A320
Given foreign holidays from the UK are banned until at least May 17th, the 24 additional routes from the country will begin on that day or later. Photo: Getty Images

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143 routes added

Wizz Air will launch some 143 routes this summer, as shown in the table below, based on analyzing OAG data and the ultra-low-cost carrier’s (ULCC) website. This doesn’t include routes operated in summer 2020 (S20) or winter 2020 (W20). Wizz Air UK is due to begin 20 routes, with this unit recently receiving its first A321neo.

Start dateFromToWeekly departures (in first week)Operator
Already started DortmundPalma2Wizz Air Hungary
Already started Kyiv ZhulyanyMilan Malpensa2Wizz Air Hungary
Already started PisaTirana1Wizz Air Hungary
Already started BelgradeHamburg1Wizz Air Hungary
April 18thAbu DhabiTel Aviv3Wizz Air Abu Dhabi
April 20thLarnacaTel Aviv2Wizz Air Hungary
April 24thBacauTurin1Wizz Air Hungary
April 25thBaselTirana2Wizz Air Hungary
April 28thRome FiumicinoKyiv Zhulyany2Wizz Air Hungary
April 29thMilan MalpensaOlbia2Wizz Air Hungary
April 30thBerlinCluj-Napoca1Wizz Air Hungary
April 30thBerlinOdesa1Wizz Air Hungary
April 30thEindhovenChișinău1Wizz Air Hungary
May 1stAbu DhabiLarnaca1Wizz Air Abu Dhabi
May 1stKatowiceZaporizhzhia1Wizz Air Hungary
May 1stKharkivLarnaca1Wizz Air Hungary
May 2ndAbu DhabiOdesa2Wizz Air Abu Dhabi
May 13thAbu DhabiNur-Sultan2Wizz Air Abu Dhabi
May 13thBolognaOlbia2Wizz Air Hungary
May 14thAbu DhabiAlmaty2Wizz Air Abu Dhabi
May 14thRome CiampinoTirana2Wizz Air Hungary
May 14th MalmoTirana2Wizz Air Hungary
May 15thStockholm SkavstaTirana2Wizz Air Hungary
May 16thBelgradeOslo Torp2Wizz Air Hungary
May 17thBirminghamLarnaca2Wizz Air Hungary
May 17thCardiffHeraklion3Wizz Air UK
May 17thCardiffTenerife South3Wizz Air UK
May 17thDalamanLondon Luton2Wizz Air UK
May 17thDoncasterFaro2Wizz Air UK
May 17thDoncasterKosice2Wizz Air UK
May 17thDoncasterPalma2Wizz Air UK
May 18thAlicanteLondon Luton3Wizz Air UK
May 18thAlicanteDoncaster2Wizz Air UK
May 18thCardiffLarnaca2Wizz Air UK
May 18thLondon GatwickMalaga4Wizz Air UK
May 19thDalamanDoncaster2Wizz Air UK
May 20thAlicanteCardiff2Wizz Air UK
May 20thCardiffFaro2Wizz Air UK
May 20thCardiffPalma2Wizz Air UK
May 20thDortmundSarajevo3Wizz Air Hungary
May 20thMemmingenSarajevo2Wizz Air Hungary
May 21stBaselSarajevo2Wizz Air Hungary
May 21stBrussels CharleroiSarajevo2Wizz Air Hungary
May 21stLondon LutonSarajevo2Wizz Air UK
May 22ndCopenhagenSarajevo2Wizz Air Hungary
May 22ndParis BeauvaisSarajevo2Wizz Air Hungary
May 23rdEindhovenSarajevo2Wizz Air Hungary
May 23rdGothenburgSarajevo2Wizz Air Hungary
May 26thBorgasDoncaster2Wizz Air UK
May 28thDoncasterHeraklion2Wizz Air UK
May 28thTiranaPescara2Wizz Air Hungary
May 29thAbu DhabiSohag2Wizz Air Abu Dhabi
May 29thCorfuCardiff2Wizz Air UK
May 31stAlicanteOslo3Wizz Air Hungary
May 31stCluj-NapocaKarlsruhe3Wizz Air Hungary
May 31stKharkivMilan Malpensa2Wizz Air Hungary
May 31stKyiv ZhulyanySalzburg2Wizz Air Hungary
May 31stLvivVerona2Wizz Air Hungary
May 31stMilan MalpensaZaporizhzhia2Wizz Air Hungary
May 31stSalzburgVarna2Wizz Air Hungary
June 1stAbu DhabiYerevan2Wizz Air Abu Dhabi
June 1stBaselPalermo2Wizz Air Hungary
June 1stBolognaOdesa2Wizz Air Hungary
June 1stBolognaPalermo7Wizz Air Hungary
June 1stBrindisiPisa3Wizz Air Hungary
June 1stCagliariMilan Malpensa7Wizz Air Hungary
June 1stCataniaLviv2Wizz Air Hungary
June 1stChaniaOslo2Wizz Air Hungary
June 1stGenoaTirana2Wizz Air Hungary
June 1stGran CanariaOslo2Wizz Air Hungary
June 1stKharkivVenice Treviso2Wizz Air Hungary
June 1stKyiv ZhulyanyVenice Treviso2Wizz Air Hungary
June 1stLarnacaOslo2Wizz Air Hungary
June 1stPalermoPisa7Wizz Air Hungary
June 1stPalermoTurin4Wizz Air Hungary
June 1stPalermoVerona3Wizz Air Hungary
June 2ndBergenBucharest2Wizz Air Hungary
June 2ndBolognaKyiv Zhulyany2Wizz Air Hungary
June 2ndBrindisiBologna4Wizz Air Hungary
June 2ndCataniaKyiv Zhulyany2Wizz Air Hungary
June 2ndCataniaPisa5Wizz Air Hungary
June 2ndCluj-NapocaHamburg2Wizz Air Hungary
June 2ndDortmundMarrakesh2Wizz Air Hungary
June 2ndLondon LutonPalermo3Wizz Air Hungary
June 2ndMilan MalpensaOdesa2Wizz Air Hungary
June 2ndOlbiaVenice Treviso5Wizz Air Hungary
June 2ndOlbiaVerona7Wizz Air Hungary
June 2ndPalermoVenice Treviso5Wizz Air Hungary
June 2ndRome FiumicinoOdesa2Wizz Air Hungary
June 3rdBaselChișinău2Wizz Air Hungary
June 3rdCagliariBucharest2Wizz Air Hungary
June 3rdCologneCluj-Napoca2Wizz Air Hungary
June 4thAbu DhabiLuxor2Wizz Air Abu Dhabi
June 4thAnconaTirana2Wizz Air Hungary
June 4thCataniaSt Petersburg2Wizz Air Hungary
June 4thOdesaVenice Treviso2Wizz Air Hungary
June 6thOsloSplit2Wizz Air Hungary
June 10thBorgasDortmund3Wizz Air Hungary
June 10thBorgasTel Aviv3Wizz Air Hungary
June 10thRhodesTel Aviv1Wizz Air Hungary
June 11thBorgasKyiv Zhulyany3Wizz Air Hungary
June 11thBorgasLiverpool2Wizz Air Hungary
June 11thBorgasPoznan2Wizz Air Hungary
June 11thCluj-NapocaMykonos2Wizz Air Hungary
June 11thGdanskSantorini2Wizz Air Hungary
June 11thKrakowSplit2Wizz Air Hungary
June 11thMykonosTel Aviv2Wizz Air Hungary
June 11thPrevezaWarsaw2Wizz Air Hungary
June 11thSantoriniSofia2Wizz Air Hungary
June 12thBorgasWroclaw2Wizz Air Hungary
June 12thCluj-NapocaZakynthos 2Wizz Air Hungary
June 12thSantoriniVilnius2Wizz Air Hungary
June 13thBorgasEindhoven2Wizz Air Hungary
June 13thBorgasTurku2Wizz Air Hungary
June 13thBudapestChania2Wizz Air Hungary
June 13thChaniaSofia2Wizz Air Hungary
June 13thChaniaVienna2Wizz Air Hungary
June 13thChaniaWarsaw2Wizz Air Hungary
June 13thCorfuSofia2Wizz Air Hungary
June 13thGdanskHeraklion2Wizz Air Hungary
June 13thGdanskSplit2Wizz Air Hungary
June 13thIasiSantorini2Wizz Air Hungary
June 13thRhodesWarsaw2Wizz Air Hungary
June 13thThessalonikiWarsaw2Wizz Air Hungary
June 13thZakynthos Warsaw2Wizz Air Hungary
June 15thBucharestZakynthos 2Wizz Air Hungary
June 15thCorfuBucharest2Wizz Air Hungary
June 15thHeraklionKrakow2Wizz Air Hungary
June 15thHeraklionTel Aviv3Wizz Air Hungary
June 15thSantoriniTel Aviv2Wizz Air Hungary
June 15thSantoriniWarsaw2Wizz Air Hungary
June 15th HeraklionWarsaw2Wizz Air Hungary
June 16thCorfuKatowice2Wizz Air Hungary
June 16thHeraklionChișinău2Wizz Air Hungary
June 16thSantoriniKrakow2Wizz Air Hungary
June 17thDebrecenSantorini1Wizz Air Hungary
June 20thSplit Wroclaw1Wizz Air Hungary
July 1stMilan BergamoSt Petersburg3Wizz Air Hungary
July 2ndSt PetersburgVenice Treviso2Wizz Air Hungary
July 4thSt PetersburgSalzburg2Wizz Air Hungary
September 30thAbu DhabiKutaisi2Wizz Air Abu Dhabi
October 1stCardiffLanzarote3Wizz Air UK
October 1stDoncasterFuerteventura2Wizz Air UK

Italy and Greece see most added

Italy and Greece have seen 40 and 33 routes added respectively. Because of this and routes added in S20/W20, Wizz Air will have a total of 207 routes to, from, and within Italy in S21, up from just 88 in S19. For Greece, it is 83, up from just 21.

Wizz Air’s average weekly frequency on these 143 routes is two based on the first week each begins. However, a good number later increase, especially Bologna to Olbia and Rome Ciampino to Tirana. Moreover, some four routes – each within Italy – start with a seven-weekly offering, demonstrating how Wizz Air is taking the fight to the country. In S21, LCCs have nearly six in ten Italy seats (57%), OAG data reveals, with Wizz Air closing in on easyJet.

Wizz Air aircraft
Palermo has seen the most seats added from additional routes, partly from higher-frequency domestic services. Photo: Getty Images.

Why this growth?

You’d be forgiven for thinking that this fast growth is just from Wizz Air cutting aircraft from existing bases and redistributing them. But it’s not. Since the pandemic struck, Wizz Air has added over 30 new aircraft, paving the way for the ULCC’s changes. Speaking at Routes Reconnected last year, József Váradi, Wizz Air’s CEO, said that:

“From a business standpoint, coronavirus is an opportunity to position Wizz Air versus the industry to come out as a much stronger player, a much more formidable competing force.”

This is illustrated in Wizz Air’s much bigger focus recently on flights within Western Europe, which will be key to future growth and size.

Do you think Wizz Air is taking the right approach? Comment below!