Ryanair’s statement of intent: 250 new routes involving 116 airports and 34 countries in W21
In case anyone thought that Wizz Air had become the new champion of new route launches across Europe, Ryanair has apparently made it clear that it is still Europe’s leading airline when it comes to starting new services. Research by The ANKER Report indicates that Europe’s biggest (U)LCC will be launching almost 250, yes 250, new routes during the first couple of weeks of the new W21/22 season that officially began yesterday, on Sunday 31 October. That’s quite some statement of intent.
New bases in Denmark, Italy, Latvia, Morocco and Sweden
The new routes are spread across 116 airports in 34 countries, including some outside of Europe (Israel, Jordan and Morocco). Several airports see the resumption of services after a break, but the only airport to receive its first ever Ryanair flights this winter is Stockholm ARN where Ryanair has opened a base. This replaces the base it previously had at the more remote Stockholm NYO facility. The new Arlanda base opens with 22 routes and 93 weekly departures, at least to start with.
Ryanair has also opened four more bases at the start of the winter season; in Agadir (Morocco), Billund (Denmark), Riga (Latvia) and Turin (Italy). All four of these airports feature among the top 15 airports for new Ryanair routes this winter. Billund had previously been a Ryanair base between 2012 and 2015. Pre-existing bases that are welcoming at least 10 new routes this winter are Brussels CRL, Lisbon, Naples, Paris BVA, Rome FCO and Vienna. Rome FCO benefits from a number of routes being transferred from Rome CIA.
Helsinki makes a surprise appearance in these rankings having previously only been served by Ryanair from Vienna, and then only briefly last summer. This winter will see Ryanair launch eight routes to the Finnish capital; from Brussels CRL, Kaunas, London STN, Milan BGY, Paris BVA, Poznan, Riga and Warsaw WMI.
Italy leads Spain for most new routes
Looking at the almost 250 new routes in terms of which countries are celebrating the most, new Ryanair routes this winter and two countries are well ahead of all others. Italy is out in front with 88 routes, ahead of Spain with 64. Then comes the UK (with 33) and Morocco (with 32). However, some of the new Morocco routes, aimed at the winter sun leisure market, are likely to be delayed because of travel restrictions imposed by the Moroccan authorities on flights from Germany, the Netherlands and the UK.
Among the five major western European travel markets, Germany is the one to welcome fewest new Ryanair routes this winter, with a relatively modest 20. However, Karlsruhe/Baden-Baden and Memmingen both welcome five new routes, Cologne Bonn four and Frankfurt HHN three.