World2Fly: Inside Spain’s Transatlantic Airline Start Up

This week, the Spanish touristic group Iberostar (through one of its companies, W2M) introduced to the world its new airline, World2Fly. This commercial airline plans to connect Spain with tourist hotspots in Latin America.

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World2Fly expects to fly in 2021, using an Airbus A350. Photo: Getty Images

What do we know?

World2Fly expects to take off in spring 2021, said the airline on its brand new website. While it hasn’t announced where in Spain it would fly from, it has named three of its possible destinations.

“We expect to be taking off in spring 2021, to destinations such as Punta Cana – Dominican Republic, Cancun – Mexico, and La Habana – Cuba,” it said.

Once this start-up flies, it would be the latest in a string of tour operator airlines that have been active in Europe. We think of airlines such as the ceased Thomas Cook, or TUI, for instance.

The new Spanish carrier plans to operate with at least one brand-new Airbus A350, added World2Fly.

World2Fly: Inside Spain’s Transatlantic Airline Start Up
This is a render of World2Fly’s A350. Photo: World2Fly

Why the A350?

Indeed, there are quite a few options for transatlantic connectivity. Some airlines use the Boeing 787 Dreamliner, while others opt for older aircraft such as the Airbus A340. However, World2Fly expects to operate Airbus jewel for the long-haul segment, the A350.

The objective is to make the passengers “feel on holiday before you even reach your destination.” 

While it didn’t say exactly what model of the A350 would use, World2Fly said that this new generation aircraft is equipped with the latest technology and it is more respectful with the environment.

The A350-900 can accommodate between 300 and 350 passengers in a standard three-class configuration. It flies up to 15,000 kilometers on its standard version. The Ultra Long Range version can fly up to 18,000 kilometers.

Meanwhile, the A350-1000 has more capacity, between 350 and 410 passengers, and even more range, with 16,100 kilometers. As of October 2020, Airbus had 762 orders for the A350-900 and 168 for the A350-100. Between the two, it had delivered 391 units to 37 operators around the world.

What is Iberostar?

Iberostar Group is a tourism and hotel group based in Majorca, Spain. It has many hotels across Europe and America. For instance, it has three hotels in Cuba (two in Cayo Coco and one in Varadero), one in Punta Cana, and one in Cancun.

It also has one hotel in New York, one in Miami, and two in Praia do Forte, a small leisure village near Salvador, Brazil. In the long run, we can expect any of these three cities to become destinations for World2Fly.

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Thomas Cook, the example of tour operator airlines, ceased operations earlier this year. Photo: Getty Images

Does charter airlines for tour operators work?

At first glance, you’d be tempted to say that charter airlines for tour operators don’t work. After all, Thomas Cook ceased operations earlier this year, and it wasn’t related at all to COVID-19.

But maybe, they do have a future, mainly in the transatlantic market.

Between 2010 and 2015, package holiday trips by air by UK residents increased by 25.6%, according to David Ramos Pérez and Frédéric Dobruszkes.

Even though Thomas Cook’s disappearance hit the charter industry, maybe COVID-19 will sparkle it in the future.

This year, many tourists lost their dream vacations due to the virus. Some delayed their plans, but there are many who simply lost money. In this sense, tour operators and tour agencies may have a shot at capitalizing on the pandemic’s injustices.

They can restore the confidence of travelers by selling all-inclusive packages bulletproof against uncertainty. Why bother buying a ticket with an airline, booking a room with a hotel, renting a car with a leasing company when you can do it all with one single company that offers everything plus the certainty of not losing the invested money if plans have to change?

Maybe that’s the bet of Iberostar with World2Fly. It will be fascinating to see how it develops.

Would you be interested in flying with World2Fly? Let us know in the comments.

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