Air Malta inaugurated a twice weekly scheduled service to Sicily’s capital and political centre, Palermo.
This service will be operated in addition to the 15 weekly flights to the island’s other important city of Catania. These flights reinforce Air Malta’s leading position as the leading carrier serving the two islands and the national airline’s commitment to both islands in various sectors including tourism, economic and cultural areas.
“This is more good news for our Maltese and Sicilian customers,” said Joseph Galea, Air Malta’s Deputy Chief Commercial Office upon the arrival of the first flight. “We are thrilled to inaugurate our new services to/from Palermo’s Falcone-Borsellino airport. This service which will be operated with Airbus A319 and A320 aircraft will not be a seasonal route just for summer, but we will continue our services throughout winter and we expect to carry around 20,000 passengers in the first year of operation.”
“Air Malta offers the best choice for travellers not only to Sicily but throughout Italy where we operate also to Rome and Milan with a total of 34 weekly flights and the highest number of frequencies per destination compared to any other carrier. With the additional passengers generated through this route we aim to carry over 350,000 from all over Italy next year,” added Mr Galea.
Commenting on this launch Mr Leslie Vella, Deputy Chief Executive of the Malta Tourism Authority said, “The Sicilian tourist market to Malta is attractive due to its proximity and volume. Sicily is a diverse island and while its eastern half enjoys good connectivity with Malta, the same cannot be said for connections with its west. The new, year-round Air Malta service to Palermo will address this imbalance and create strong potential for increased tourism from our closest neighbour.”
Mr Alan Borg, Chief Executive of Malta International Airport added, “We welcome today’s development on two levels: first off, the Italian market is one of Malta’s top drivers of passenger traffic and the inauguration of the Palermo route adds another new connection to our schedule year-round. Apart from this, the introduction of Palermo will serve to further harness Sicily’s unique potential as an ideal destination for short breaks due to our islands’ proximity. I would like to commend the team at Air Malta for their efforts in developing this new route.”
The Maltese National Airline will operate two weekly flights to/from Palermo every Monday and Thursday. The new service will offer connectivity between Malta and the western part of Sicily.
This year, as part of its constant schedule improvements Air Malta has retimed some of Catania’s flights to offer better connectivity with services to major European cities. These initiatives are expected to continue facilitating business opportunities between the two islands.