By Mateen Kontoravdis
Already famous for its $99 international flights, WOW Air again made headlines on Wednesday when it announced flights to four new destinations in the U.S. The airline plans to launch flights to Cleveland, Cincinnati, Detroit, and St. Louis next spring.
WOW will fly four flights a week on the Airbus A321, which seats 220 passengers, between these four cities and its hub at Keflavik Airport near Iceland’s capital Reykjavik. From the airlines hub, passengers will be able to connect to over 24 destinations throughout Europe.
In an interview with USA Today, WOW Air Founder and CEO Skúlli Mogensen said, “Our unique opportunity is to use Iceland as a hub. We can then distribute the traffic to our main destinations in Europe, be it London, Paris, Amsterdam, Frankfurt, Berlin, Copenhagen, etc.”
“That’s really the key. Instead of having a single point-to-point flight, we actually give you a very affordable flight to multiple destinations in Europe via Iceland,” said Mogensen.
WOW Air flew its first flight to the U.S. in 2015, when it inaugurated service to Baltimore (BWI) and Boston. Since then, the airline has expanded to 12 destinations in the U.S., including the four announced.
Cleveland lost flights to Europe in 2008 when Continental Airlines discontinued its non-stop flight to Paris (CDG) in May of that year. With the addition of WOW Air, convenient connecting options through Reykjavik to the rest of Europe will once again be restored.
However, the airline announced flights to the city just one day after its hometown rival, Icelandair, announced service to the city. Both airlines will begin nonstop flights to Reykjavik in May 2018. WOW Air made it clear that it welcomes competition, so it will be very interesting to see the two airlines compete on the same route in a market which has no other connections to Europe.
Flights to Cincinnati commence on May 10, 2018. “Connecting the Tri-State community with additional nonstop international destinations has been a priority for CVG,” said Candace McGraw, Chief Executive Officer of Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport, in a press release.