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394 new services launched in five weeks by 35 airlines in Europe; Ryanair dominates once again

In the five weeks since The ANKER Report was last published, Europe’s airlines have again been busy starting a significant number of new routes. This analysis covers the period of Saturday 9 October to Friday 12 November. This timeframe included the start of the northern hemisphere W21/22 season, which officially began on Sunday 31 October.

While The ANKER Report would like to believe that it has identified all of the new routes launched across Europe during this period, the reality is that several new services are likely to have been overlooked for a variety of reasons. Feel free to let me know via my e-mail.

Almost 400 routes launched in last four weeks

However, what can be said with reasonable confidence is that at least 394 new routes involving European airports have been identified and confirmed, as a result of checking airline websites, published schedule data, flight tracking websites and the airports and airlines themselves. That equates to an average of around 11 new routes per day. Around two-thirds of the routes launched faced no direct competition.

These routes have been launched by 35 airlines (including some from outside of Europe) and involve over 191 airports across almost 60 countries. Yes, the last five weeks has seen new routes added between Europe and regions outside of Europe, including Africa (Air France to Gambia), Asia (Vistara from Delhi to Paris CDG), the Caribbean (Aer Lingus to Barbados), the Middle East (Air France and Edelweiss to Muscat) and North America (Finnair to the US from Stockholm ARN).

For full details of all these new routes, including weekly frequency, aircraft type, sector length and competitor analysis, please check out the downloadable New European Route Database (NERD) file, which can be downloaded free from or

Top 17 airlines for new routes in Europe

Ryanair leads the way once more

Among airlines, one carrier has been way ahead of all others (yet again), Ryanair. Its 244 new routes account for 62% (!) of all new services launched during the last five weeks involving airports in Europe. This has included opening new bases in Agadir (Morocco), Billund (Denmark), Riga (Latvia), Stockholm ARN (Sweden) and Turin (Italy).

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Next comes Vueling with 30. These are mostly from its expanded base at Paris ORY, where it acquired slots that Air France was forced to hand back as part of an agreement regarding the French government’s financial support during the pandemic. Four other (U)LCCs celebrated the addition of 10 or more new routes to their network; easyJet, Eurowings, Volotea and Wizz Air. Three Nordic carriers all added four new routes; Finnair from Stockholm ARN, Flyr from Oslo and SAS from its Swedish airports.

Paris ORY top for new route launches

Of the top 19 airports for most new services, six were in Spain, three were in Italy and two were in France. The remaining eight airports are all in different countries. Paris ORY is maybe the surprise leader in this category, but this is thanks to all the new routes launched by Vueling, plus additional services from Transavia France. Stockholm ARN benefits from the opening of Ryanair’s base at the airport as well as Finnair’s new long-haul services and three SAS routes. Rome FCO’s 23 new routes are split between Ryanair (13), Wizz Air (five), Volotea (three), plus Flyr and Transavia with one each.

Top 19 airports for new European airline routes

Italy beats Spain for new services

Italy beats Spain, France, UK and Germany for being involved in most new services during the last five weeks. Italy’s 121 new routes involved 24 different Italian airports. Spain’s 99 routes were spread across 18 airports. Although Morocco is not in Europe, it appears in these rankings primarily because of Ryanair opening its base in Agadir as well as adding routes to Europe from several other Moroccan airports. Among the more exotic countries celebrating the launch of a service from Europe were Angola, Barbados, Cape Verde, Gambia, Jamaica, Jordan, Mauritius, Mexico, Oman and Trinidad & Tobago.

Top 15 countries for new airline routes in Europe

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