LOT Polish Airlines to fly from Budapest base to New York and Chicago
All this was announced this morning at Budapest Ferenc Liszt International Airport hosting the introductory flight arriving from Warsaw. LOT’s 787s can accommodate 252 passengers in total, offering 18 seats is business class, 21 seats in premium economy, and 213 seats in conventional economy. The longest distance that can be covered by the aircraft with maximum take-off weight of 216 tons is 15 700 kilometers, thus it easily reaches New York on the East Coast and Chicago in the Mid-West.
Regarding the launch of the new flights to the US, Péter Szijjártó, minister of foreign affairs and trade underlined: It was a competitive disadvantage for Hungary that for several years it did not have a direct aerial link with the United States while the US is the second biggest foreign investor in Hungary. There are 100 000 jobs at about 1700 American companies in Hungary, and the value of goods traded between the two countries has been over USD 5.5 billion per annum. According to Minister Szijjártó, the launch of these flights strengthens the cooperation of Visegrád countries, and he emphasized that Central Europe has become the engine of growth of the EU.
On behalf of Poland, deputy prime minister Mateusz Morawiecki, development and finance minister of the Warsaw cabinet declared: “Today, LOT Polish Airlines is the most rapidly growing carrier in Europe. Launching direct flight connections from Budapest to the USA is another major step towards the consolidation of the CEE aviation market taken by LOT, alongside the investment in the Estonian airline Nordica. It is also the best proof that Central and Eastern Europe currently has the greatest potential to change the landscape of the European aviation market. LOT is playing an increasingly important role in providing the inhabitants of the region with the greatest possible number of travel opportunities.”
David Kostelancik, chargé d’affaires of the US embassy in Budapest, also welcomed the new direct flight: “The new flights will form yet another link between the United States and Poland and Hungary – two important allies in the region, and two countries that themselves have a long history of friendship. As a native of Chicago, I am particularly pleased that Budapest will, for the first time ever, be accessible via direct flights from Chicago. But I am also excited by the countless doors these flights will open across the United States for Hungarians.”
We are very proud to host the first base of LOT Polish airlines outside the borders of Poland with the launch of two very important US flights to New York and Chicago from Budapest. This is a truly historic moment for all three countries involved and creates a win-win situation for the passengers both in Hungary and in the US.” said Jost Lammers, CEO of Budapest Airport. He added: „Our market surveys clearly show that direct flights between these two major cities on the East Coast and the Mid-West of the US and Budapest are in high demand and will be a huge success in all segments of travelers. Aviation connectivity with a Dreamliner will also boost the economy through the use of belly cargo capacity of these modern Boeing 787 jets.
Rafal Milczarski, the CEO of LOT highlighted that in the catchment area of Budapest – in the market of long-haul flights: the area within a two-hour drive – there are no less than 8 million residents, and therefore the direct flights to the US will satisfy a major market demand, including Eastern Austria, Slovakia, the Transylvanian parts of Romania, and several countries on the Balkans. Mr. Milczarski said, “More than 165 000 passengers travel between Budapest and New York and Chigaco every year. Today, they change mainly in Frankfurt, Paris, Amsterdam, and London, which makes their journey considerably longer. We believe that the inhabitants of Budapest and the neighbouring areas should be offered a better product and thus we have decided to introduce direct flight connections between Hungary and the USA. Our strategy assumes taking up every business opportunity and we cannot waste such potential.”
Source: www.bud.hu / Budapest Airport