Monday, 19 March 2018

NIKI reincarnated as Laudamotion - taking to the skies soon

Niki Lauda's reincarnation of his 'NIKI' airline will take to the skies over Europe this spring under the banner of 'Laudamotion'

The airline will offer flights to a range of destinations including many Mediterranean holiday destinations like Palma de Mallorca, Ibiza, Malaga, Santorini, Kalamata, Crete and many more. Lauda plans for the airline to operate a fleet of 14 aircraft, flying from Austria, Germany and Switzerland in a two-class configuration.

Laudamotion is the next step, the latest development and evolution of his airline NIKI, which was an extremely successful holiday airline that Mr Lauda started in 2003. It had a great reputation and built a strong route network and phenomenal client base. Lauda sold his shares in NIKI to airberlin in 2011 and although it was part of the airberlin group, it also remained an independent company with its own management board.  After airberlin filed for insolvency in 2017, Niki Lauda purchased the airline again and soon Laudamotion will be taking to the air. 

Laudamotion is starting at the right time to take advantage of the peak travel season and tickets are already on sale, starting at just €59.99 for Spain and to Greece from € 79.99.

The Laudamotion route network focuses on Spain and Greece. Palma de Mallorca is served daily from Vienna and Salzburg, and there are flights from Graz, Innsbruck, and Linz as many as three times a week.  Laudamotion also flies to Malaga and offers island connections to sunny Ibiza departing on Thursday and returning on Sunday – which makes it perfect for a weekend getaway. In addition to connections with Italy and Cyprus.  Laudamotion will also fly from Vienna to popular Greek vacation destinations Santorini, Crete, and Kalamata.

The current Laudamotion fleet will operate under the code of OE and is made up of  14 fuel-efficient Airbus aircraft  - A319, A320 & A321. These former NIKI/airberlin aircraft will fly from Vienna, Zurich, Düsseldorf, Stuttgart, Cologne, Munich, and Frankfurt. 

It's not long to wait for the first Laudamotion plane to take off,  its scheduled to depart Düsseldorf on 25th March 2018, while flights from Austria are scheduled to start in June.

Part of the implementation plan of Laudamotion will be to build and develop solid relationships and cooperations with airline partners such as Condor, with whom a sales initiative has been put in place “Laudamotion has signed a contract of carriage with Condor. The German vacation airline will not only market Laudamotion flights, but also handle selected operational functions, such as acting as the control centre and crew planning, for Laudamotion as a service provider,” says Niki Lauda, Managing Director of Laudamotion. 

Ralf Teckentrup, Managing Director of Condor and CCO of Thomas Cook Group Airlines,
added: “We are marketing the Laudamotion range to fill a gap in the European vacation flight market. Our customers will benefit from this by having a larger selection and low-priced starter offerings.”

For customers flying from Austria, the Laudamotion range will bring additional direct connections from Vienna, Salzburg, Innsbruck, Linz, and Graz. Vacationers from Switzerland can fly on board the new Laudamotion to eight destinations in Spain, Greece, and Italy. Condor will market flights with
Laudamotion from Düsseldorf and Frankfurt to the Balearic Islands, the Canary Islands, Greece, and Italy.

Laudamotion has economy and premium offerings, the latter of which includes free meals and drinks and a free middle seat. Baggage allowance for Premium Class is 25kg for hold baggage and 10kg for hand/cabin baggage whereas in economy passengers will be able to purchases drinks and snacks at very reasonable prices. The airline will also offer different fare types, a nonflexible lower fare 'Classic' and a slightly higher one 'flexi' that affords some flexibility to change dates for a fee. In economy there is also a 'lite' entry fare level that is literally just the basic flight. 

Current timetable here. 

I can hardly wait to get moving with Laudamotion.