Lufthansa Cargo eyes expansion in Asia and Mexico with new flights
12 / 09 / 2023
Source: Lufthansa Cargo
Lufthansa Cargo is increasing its freighter flights to Mexico and Asia as the two destinations remain “attractive” and “economically strong”.
On announcing the cargo airline’s plans for its winter schedule, chief executive Ashwin Bhat acknowledged the difficult market conditions but added that there were opportunities as it adds freighter capacity.
“The market for airfreight is and remains volatile, but Asia and Mexico continue to be attractive, economically strong regions for us,” Bhat said.
“The additional capacity of our 17th Boeing 777F in our long-haul fleet offers opportunities to specifically adapt the flight offering to the needs of our customers in these markets.”
The airline’s latest 777F is due to arrive by the end of the year, while an additional Airbus A321 freighter will be put into action in September.
The A321 will expand the carrier’s short- and medium-haul freighter fleet to four of the model.
On its long-haul cargo network, the carrier plans to increase frequencies to Tel Aviv, Cairo, Hong Kong and Mexico City.
New additions to the schedule are Riyadh and Taipei.
To Tel Aviv (TLV) and Cairo (CAI), Lufthansa Cargo will operate three weekly B777 freighter services from October.
Towards Asia, the frequency to Hong Kong (HKG) will be increased from six to seven weekly flights by routing via Mumbai (BOM).
A new twice-weekly service operating from Frankfurt to Taipei (TPE) via Riyadh (RUH) will be added to the carrier’s current flight schedule in November.
“Taipei will become part of the global route network for the first time, while Riyadh has already been served by Lufthansa Cargo until 2020,” the carrier said.
Due to “steady demand”, the airline will increase the number of weekly connections to Mexico City (NLU) from six to a total of seven weekly freighter rotations in this year’s winter flight schedule.
“In July, all freighter flights were transferred to Felipe Ángeles International Airport (NLU), and numerous infrastructure measures were created, including truck shuttle services, to ensure the fast and reliable transfer of shipments between the now passenger-only Mexico City (MEX) airport and Felipe Ángeles (NLU) as a cargo airport,” the carrier explained.
Lufthansa Cargo – like the rest of the industry – has been facing difficult market conditions so far this year, although it claims to have “outperformed the market as a whole” as average yields remained 40% above 2019 levels in the second quarter of the year.
During the period, the carrier benefitted from the return of belly capacity on passenger flights during the period as demand increased by 2.1% on the back of an 8.8% capacity increase.