Austrian Airlines will launch a new route connecting Vienna with Cancun, Mexico. The flight will operate twice weekly starting from October 26th as the airline focuses on the winter sun market. The last time the airline operated flights to Cancun was back in 2006.
While most European airlines are still hoping the summer season will see a travel boom, Austrian Airlines is preparing for passengers to postpone their summer holidays in favor of some winter sun. The airline is launching several new routes for Winter 2021, including a new route to Mexico and the resumption of flights to Mauritius.
The new winter sun destinations
The new route connecting Vienna to Cancun, flight OS 61, will depart on Thursdays and Sundays at 10:40, landing in Mexico at 16:10. The return flight, flight number OS 62, will depart Cancun at 18:05, landing the following morning in Vienna at 11.30. A Boeing 777 will be used to operate the new route.
In addition to new destinations, Austrian Airlines is also planning to resume its flight to Mauritius. The airline suspended this route last year due to COVID-19 restrictions but plans to bring it back for the winter months. Passengers will be able to fly to the island three times a week with Austrian. Flights to Cape Town, South Africa, will also resume in the fall with two flights a week operated by the airline’s Boeing 777.
Finally, the airline has announced that as part of its “vacation offensive in the cold season,” it will increase the frequency of flights to the Maldives. The airline currently operates two flights a week to Male, Maldives. Austrian will increase this to three times a week as the weather in Europe gets colder.
In a statement announcing the new routes and schedule changes, Michael Trestl, COO of Austrian, said,
“People are longing for vacations, long-distance travel, and the sea. That’s why we will be focusing on attractive long-haul destinations in the coming winter flight schedule to satisfy our passengers’ desire to travel. I am confident that by then, many people worldwide will have been vaccinated that travel will once again be possible without severe restrictions.”
Slower recovery than expected
The news of the new winter routes comes just one day after the airline revised its recovery expectations due to a new wave of the virus across many European countries. Many European airlines have been hoping that continuing vaccine rollouts would ensure a fairly decent summer season. However, some vaccine programs are happening slower than expected, and travel restrictions are still in place and will be for several months.
Austrian has been focusing on restructuring and planning for long-term recovery from its Vienna hub. The new destinations announced for winter 2021 suggest the airline believes many people will be looking to travel outside Europe in a few months. The airline is basing this plan on new bookings on its website. According to the airline, people are booking tickets for flights with increasing frequency, and demand is increasing for long-haul flights as well as for intra-European routes.
What do you think of Austrian’s new routes? Will you be looking for some winter sun this year? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.