Hungary-based low-cost carrier Wizz Air has announced that 84 routes have been permanently phased out, of which a third includes flights to Italy, the country most served by Wizz Air since the start of the season. pandemic.
A similar pattern of route reduction was seen at ULCC, the remaining border airline holdings or ultra-low cost carriers, with four of its ten reductions including similar Wizz Air routes. Routes connecting Western Europe to the Middle East, Turkey and North Africa account for almost half of these cuts, reports SchengenVisaInfo.com.
Additionally, Vienna Airport was hit the hardest, seeing 12 routes cut – Alghero, Charleroi, Cologne, Dortmund, Eindhoven, Faro, Madrid, Menorca, Oslo, Skavsta, Tallinn and Warsaw. Austrian airport and Wizz Air came together in 2018 and saw considerable growth in low-cost and ultra-low-cost airlines, reaching 12.3 million seats in 2019, double the rates of the previous year. two years.
While all airlines are somewhat affected by the pandemic, Wizz Air and Ryanair are disproportionately affected as many of their routes are brand new. For example, a dozen Wizz Air Vienna routes competed directly with Ryanair this year, including Skavsta, a 103 km route between Vienna and Stockholm.
While Wizz Air removed this route, Ryanair added Arlanda airport, and the route from Vienna moved to the latter. However, since Ryanair added Stockholm Arlanda, it no longer serves Skavsta and its route from Vienna has shifted to Arlanda airport, wresting that route from its competitors.
Other heavily affected airports include Larnaca in Cyprus with eight cut routes, Warsaw (seven) and Naples (six), Gdansk, Milan Malpensa and Eindhoven (five each), Dortmund and Sofia (four each) and Ukraine Zaporizhzhia ( Three).
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In addition, Wizz Air will also be interrupting its service to the Norwegian town of Bodø and the Turkish tourist destination of Bodrum, as they each used one route each: Bodø from Gdansk (Poland) and Bodrum from Rome. The ULCC started the 1,453 kilometer route from Gdansk to Bodø in May 2019, while the Rome-Bodrum link was launched in July 2021.
Morocco’s largest city, Casablanca, entered the Wizz Air network this summer and saw only connections from Italy, Malpensa, Rome, Venice, Bologna and Naples, two of the latter being more served.
However, in general, both low cost and super low cost carriers should see their last days as budget alternatives, as they no longer fulfill their goal of offering cheap airline tickets. A recently released European Travel Council (ETC) report highlights that travel costs have declined over the past two decades, with global average spending per international trip for all destinations falling by 17% in 2019 from where they were. from 2000 in real prices.
According to ETC, cheap airfares, which have increased the number of trips such as shorter trips and weekends in the city, are responsible for the end of these cheap carriers.