Air Iceland Connect

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Air Iceland Connect
Air Iceland Connect.png
IATA ICAO Callsign
NY FXI FAXI
Founded1937 (as Flugfélag Akureyrar)
HubsReykjavík Airport
Frequent-flyer programIcelandair Saga Club
Fleet size6
Destinations15
Parent companyIcelandair Group
HeadquartersReykjavík Airport
Reykjavík, Iceland
Key peopleÁrni Gunnarsson
Websiteairicelandconnect.is

Air Iceland Connect, formerly Flugfélag Íslands ehf. (Icelandic: Flugfélag Íslands), is a regional airline with its head office at Reykjavík Airport in Reykjavík, Iceland.[1] It operates scheduled services to domestic destinations across Iceland and to Greenland and the Faroe Islands (operated by Atlantic Airways). Its main bases are Reykjavík Airport and Akureyri Airport.[2] It is a subsidiary of Icelandair Group.[3]

History[edit]

Air Iceland Connect Bombardier Dash 8-100
Air Iceland Connect Bombardier Dash 8 Q400

Air Iceland Connect can trace its history to 1937. On 3 June that year Flugfélag Akureyrar was established; the airline changed its name to Flugfélag Íslands on 13 March 1940, the third airline to bear this name. The first Flugfélag Íslands was founded on 22 March 1919 and dissolved the following year. A second airline of the same name was founded on 1 May 1928 and operated until 1931.[4] In 1973, Flugfélag Íslands and Loftleiðir merged under the name Flugleiðir hf. Its domestic division was called Flugleiðir while its transatlantic division was called Icelandair.[4]

In 1997, Flugleiðir's domestic operation merged with Flugfélag Norðurlands under the name Flugfélag Íslands.[4] Flugfélag Norðurlands was formed in Akureyri by Tryggvi Helgason as Norðurflug, and was incorporated as Flugfélag Norðurlands on 1 May 1975.

In late 2011, Flugfélag Íslands acquired two Bombardier Dash 8-200 aircraft for delivery in early 2012. Upon delivery of these aircraft, the airline sold its only Dash 8-100 series aircraft. It previously operated ATR 42 aircraft, wet leased from Islandsflug, from 2000 to 2003.[5] A fleet of three Bombardier Dash 8-Q400 aircraft replaced the airline's five Fokker 50 aircraft in 2015-16. Services using the new aircraft included routes to Aberdeen which started in March 2016, and Belfast which began in June 2017; flown out of Keflavík International Airport.

In May 2017, Flugfélag Íslands announced it had rebranded as Air Iceland Connect. The airline said in a statement that it had decided to modify its name owing to a number of factors such as increased exposure to international markets and tourists, increased co-operation with Icelandair and to simplify marketing, as the company’s dual name system had meant a significant increase in costs, caused some passengers inconvenience and led to misunderstandings.[6] Dropping the Icelandic name resulted in complaints about the attack on the Icelandic language.[7]

In February 2018, Air Iceland Connect announced a strategy change by focusing on regional destinations. Therefore, flights to the United Kingdom have been cut by 14 May 2018 and the Bombardier Dash 8 Q400s will be phased out.[8]

Destinations[edit]

[9] Air Iceland Connect additionally cooperates and code-shares on flights to the Faroe Islands operated by Atlantic Airways as well as on services to Grímsey, Thorshofn and Vopnafjörður operated by Norlandair.

Iceland
Greenland

Fleet[edit]

As of August 2018, the Air Iceland Connect fleet consisted of the following aircraft:

Air Iceland Connect fleet
Aircraft In Service Orders Passengers Notes
Bombardier Dash 8-Q200 3 37
Bombardier Dash 8-Q400 3 74
Total 6

Among the destinations, most in Greenland and some in Iceland have runways less than 1,100 metres (3,600 ft) in length. The Dash 8-200 is the only aircraft type possessed by Air Iceland Connect compatible with such runways. Its retired fleet includes Fokker 50s.[10][11]

Accidents and incidents[edit]

  • On 29 May 1947, a Flugfélag Íslands Douglas DC-3 with registration TF-ISI crashed at Héðinsfjörður, Iceland, in bad weather, killing all 25 on board. As of 2018 this is the worst aircraft accident to occur in Iceland.[12]
  • On 4 March 2011, a de Havilland Canada Dash 8-100 registered TF-JMB was hit by a microburst while landing at Nuuk Airport in Greenland. It touched down hard and the right main landing gear collapsed. The aircraft veered off the runway, tearing the nose landing gear off. The 31 people on board were unharmed, however, the aircraft was written off.[13][14]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Home. Air Iceland Connect. Retrieved on 13 February 2011. "Air Iceland - Reykjavik airport - 101 Reykjavik"
  2. ^ "Directory: World Airlines". Flight International. 2007-03-27. p. 58.
  3. ^ "Air Iceland Connect". airicelandconnect.is. Retrieved 3 March 2018.
  4. ^ a b c "Flugsagan". flugsafn.is (in Icelandic). Icelandic Air Museum. Retrieved 3 March 2018.
  5. ^ "Air Iceland fleet list". planespotters.net. Retrieved July 19, 2014.
  6. ^ "Air Iceland rebrands as Air Iceland Connect". ch-aviation.com. Retrieved May 26, 2017.
  7. ^ "New English name for domestic flight company in Iceland faces criticism". Iceland Monitor. 26 May 2017.
  8. ^ ch-aviation.com - Air Iceland Connect to cut fleet, quit UK 16 February 2018
  9. ^ "ROUTE MAP". airiceland.is. Retrieved 19 May 2018.
  10. ^ Milla Ósk Magnúsdóttir (21 April 2017). "Sögu Fokker vélanna hjá FÍ lýkur". RÚV (in Icelandic). Retrieved 3 March 2018.
  11. ^ Birgir Þór Harðarson (21 April 2017). "Flugfélagið selur allar Fokker-vélarnar". Kjarninn (in Icelandic). Retrieved 3 March 2018.
  12. ^ Accident description for Flugfélag Íslands Douglas C-47A-25-DK (DC-3) TF-ISI, 29 May 1947 at the Aviation Safety Network. Retrieved on 4 March 2018.
  13. ^ "Íslensk vél brotlenti á flugvellinum í Nuuk - allir farþegar ómeiddir" [Icelandic aircraft crashed at the airport in Nuuk - all passengers unharmed] (in Icelandic). 365. 4 March 2011.
  14. ^ Accident description for Flugfélag Íslands de Havilland Canada DHC-8-106 TF-JMB, 4 March 2011 at the Aviation Safety Network. Retrieved on 4 March 2018.

External links[edit]

Media related to Air Iceland Connect at Wikimedia Commons