Alitalia will resume its flights to China by this summer. The renewal of the bilateral agreement between Italy and China finally makes it possible to offer customers the chance to fly to several destinations, enabling Alitalia to start up a daily service to China by this summer. This daily flight, linking Milan and Shanghai, represents the first step towards new operations in the Far East. Subsequently, flights to Beijing will start up again, also on a daily basis, by the end of the year.
Alitalia’s new summer timetable also includes increased services for Moscow, Warsaw, Stuttgart, Dusseldorf and Frankfurt (in collaboration with AF) and Algiers. Regarding Moscow, this will be a new daily flight based on Rome, in addition to the one from Milan. In addition, there will be one more flight a week for Osaka (from five to six in all - four from Milan, two from Rome), and the daily service for Venezuela will be changed by the transfer of two flights to Rome.
In keeping with its new fleet structure, Alitalia is continuing to expand in areas of the world where there is marked potential for growth. This is taking place in spite of the fact that there has been a noticeable drop in demand due to the situation caused by the possible war in Iraq, and even though Alitalia has planned a limited number of flight cancellations if hostilities do break out.
Regarding the possible effects of war, the increase in fuel price (up by 30% in the last six months) forces Alitalia to raise the price of air tickets as of March 15, in line with measures already adopted by other domestic and international carriers.
The increases will range from 6 euros for domestic flights, to 8 euros for international routes, and 12 euros for intercontinental ones, excluding flights operated as a public service for Sardinia. These surcharges (which are subject to commission on the part of travel agencies) are to be considered temporary and strictly linked to contingent international events.