Deutsche Lufthansa AG will add a slew of U.S. destinations from Frankfurt and Munich next summer mainly using its low-cost Eurowings arm in a bid to attract more leisure travelers.
Europe’s biggest airline group will serve Phoenix, Anchorage in Alaska and Orlando, Florida, with Eurowings jets, according to a statement Wednesday. Flights to Las Vegas due to begin with the division’s first Frankfurt routes this winter will also be retained, and a new service from Munich added. Lufthansa itself will start operating to Seattle and Detroit.
Low-cost airlines have generally struggled to turn a profit on long-haul flights, where travel times make it tougher to improve aircraft utilization and passengers are more willing to spend money on a higher standard of service. Lufthansa announced in June that it would focus Eurowings on short-haul routes, maintaining inter-continental operations only from its hubs in Frankfurt and Munich where connecting planes help fill seats.
Harry Hohmeister, the group’s chief commercial officer, said the combination of Lufthansa’s marketing might with the lower cost base of Eurowings will help tap a long-haul tourism market that is “rising sharply.”
Eurowings will make its debut at Lufthansa’s main Frankfurt base in October with flights that will include the holiday islands of Barbados and Mauritius, as well as Windhoek in the former German colony of Namibia, a destination that will also be retained for the summer.
Lufthansa will additionally commence flights from Munich to Bangalore, India, starting next March.
Thomas Cook Group Plc subsidiary Condor also flies from Frankfurt to generally second-tier U.S. airports, while low-cost Asian carriers are beginning to target European routes, with Scoot, the budget arm of Singapore Airlines, offering flights to Athens and Berlin.
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