Scandinavian Airlines will deploy a sixth Airbus A340-300 to increase frequencies to and from Newark and Chicago in the carrier's winter schedule, which begins...

Scandinavian Airlines (SAS) will deploy a sixth Airbus A340-300 to increase frequencies to and from Newark and Chicago in the carrier’s winter schedule, which begins on October 31.

Compared to last winter’s schedule, Scandinavian Airlines will add one flight per week on each of three routes: Newark-Copenhagen, which will be operated daily this winter; Newark-Stockholm, which will operate six days per week; and Chicago-Copenhagen, which will operate daily.

Service frequency on each of Scandinavian Airlines’ other two routes to the United States, between Chicago and Stockholm and between Washington Dulles International Airport and Copenhagen, will remain at five round-trips a week in the airline’s 2010-11 winter schedule.

The move follows what SAS says has been strong demand on all its long-haul routes. Demand among both business and leisure travelers has increased considerably in recent months to all long-haul destinations served from SAS’s hubs at Copenhagen and Stockholm, and there is now an all-time high load factor on the majority of routes, says the carrier.

“We see that customers are coming back strongly after more moderate travel behavior during the past 18 months,” says Robin Kamark, chief commercial officer for SAS. “For both the US and Asia, we are once again almost always full in our Business cabin, while both Economy Extra and Economy also sell incredibly well. We have seen the customer demands, particularly among our business customers, and are therefore expanding.”

Scandinavian Airlines operates a fleet of Airbus A340-300 four-engine widebody jets and twin-engine A330-300s on its long-haul routes to North America and Asia from its hubs at Stockholm Arlanda and Copenhagen Airport. The carrier has seven A340-300s in total, but put two into storage as a result of the global downturn. As a reuslt of improving traffic in 2010, SAS decided to re-activate one of the two grounded aircraft to boost service frequencies on some routes in its 2010 winter schedule and can bring the other A340 back into service if needed to boost services on other routes

SAS will operate 30 flights between the US and Scandinavia in winter 2010, an increase of three flights per week, using wide-body Airbus A340-300 and A330-300 aircraft with Business, Economy Extra (premium economy) and Economy cabins. SAS also will add frequencies to its Copenhagen-Bangkok and Copenhagen-Dubai services.

The aircraft that SAS is bringing into service is one of two A340-300s that it put into storage at least a year ago as a reuslt of the downturn in air traffic caused by the global economic downturn. The other aircraft remains available for re-entry into service should the carrier wish to add frequencies on its other long-haul routes to North America and Asia.

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