Iberia Express kicks off with 17 routes

Iberia Express will begin operations with flights between Madrid and Palma de Mallorca, Alicante, Malaga, and Seville.

During the summer season, 17 destinations will be served, including Vigo, Santiago de Compostela, Granada, Minorca, Ibiza, Fuerteventura, Lanzarote, and La Palma in Spain, and also Dublin, Naples, Mikonos, Riga and Amsterdam.

The new airline is led by CEO Luis Gallego and was designed to restore profitability to short- and medium-haul routes, operating initially with four A320s on domestic and European routes. By the end of 2012 the company is expected to have fourteen A320s and a staff of some 500 people. The new company aims to strengthen the Iberia group’s Madrid-Barajas hub and contribute to the growth of its long-haul business.

CEO Gallego remarked, “Iberia Express will have the best of Iberia and new attributes associated with the ‘express’ concept.” The new airline will be managed independently, but will use Iberia’s maintenance and other services.

“The containment of costs will allow Iberia Express to grow and compete with the low-cost operators,” Gallego added. The airline says it will offer customers more affordable fares while maintaining the levels of service provided by Iberia. Domestic flights including travel from the Spanish mainland to the Balearic Islands will now start at €25.

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