Wizz Air

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Wizz Air Hungary
Wizz Air 2015.svg
IATA ICAO Callsign
W6[1] WZZ WIZZAIR
Founded September 2003
Operating bases
Fleet size 87
Destinations 144
Company slogan Now we can all fly.
Parent company Wizz Air Holdings Plc
Headquarters Budapest, Hungary
Key people Bill Franke (Chairman)
József Váradi (CEO)
Diederik Pen (COO)
Revenue Increase €1,571.2 million (2017)[2]
Operating income Increase €246.7 million (2017)[2]
Net income Increase €246 million (2017)[2]
Website wizzair.com

Wizz Air, legally incorporated as Wizz Air Hungary Ltd. (Hungarian: Wizz Air Hungary Légiközlekedési Kft.), is a Hungarian[3] low-cost airline with its head office in Budapest. The airline serves many cities across Europe, Israel and the United Arab Emirates.[4] It has the largest fleet of any Hungarian airline, although it is not a flag carrier, and currently serves 42 countries.[4] [5] Its Jersey based parent company, Wizz Air Holdings Plc, is listed on the London Stock Exchange and is a constituent of the FTSE 250 Index.

History[edit]

The airline was established in September 2003. The lead investor is Indigo Partners, an American private equity firm[6] specializing in transportation investments. The first flight was made from Katowice International Airport on 19 May 2004.[7] The airline's CEO is József Váradi, former CEO of Malév Hungarian Airlines. The company is registered in Pest County (Hungary).[8]

In 2011, Wizz Air carried 11 million passengers (15% more than in 2010), including 4.2 million passengers on Polish routes (only 2% more than in 2010). Recently Wizz opened new bases in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Georgia, Latvia, Lithuania, Macedonia, Moldova, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia and Ukraine. However, Poland is still the largest market for Wizz Air.[9]

On 4 October 2012, Wizz Air launched a new cabin bag policy to encourage customers to bring smaller baggage on-board following a successful month-long trial on the London Luton and Katowice route. This means that a smaller (42x32x25cm) cabin bag can be taken on board for free; larger cabin bags (56x45x25cm) would incur a fee varying between €10 or €30.[10]

On 25 February 2015 Wizz Air started trading on London Stock Exchange.[11]

Corporate affairs[edit]

Head office[edit]

Cabin of a Wizz Air Airbus A320-200
Wizz Air Airbus A320-200 wearing the company's former livery

The current Head office can be found in Laurus offices, Budapest since March 2016. The new building has 5 floors, which gives the company more space than any of the former headquarters.[12] Previously, its head office was at Budapest Liszt Ferenc International Airport.[13]

Financial performance[edit]

While attempting to hasten SkyEurope's demise in June 2009, Wizz Air claimed it had been "profitable for several years".[14] However, as a private company it is not required to publish its financial accounts - annual reports are still available. In November 2009, it emerged that Wizz Air was significantly loss-making and had never made a profit while delaying the pay-back of €32 million of debt by five years.[15] Losses since commencing operations total €78 million, which, in 2009, fueled suggestions that the airline would file for bankruptcy.[16] Since then Wizz Air reported profits in 2012,[17] in 2013, in 2014[18] and in 2015.[2] Wizz Air has the second lowest CASK (cost per available seat km) among European airlines.[18]

Subsidiaries[edit]

As of April 2015, Wizz Air had created subsidiaries in three countries, but these no longer exist:

Wizz Announced that they are planning to launch a British division called Wizz Air UK. The airline is to be based at London Luton. The airline has applied to the CAA for an AOC and Operating Licence. It is expected that the airline will launch operations in March 2018 using British registered aircraft. Wizz Air UK will start to take over the flights to the UK that are currently operated by Wizz Air. Wizz Air said that the airline will employ up to 100 staff by the end of 2018.[23]

Operations[edit]

Wizz Air prefers to land at smaller or secondary airports to reduce costs and fees. The airline also has a buy on board service called Wizz Café and a shopping service called Wizz Boutique.[24]

Destinations[edit]

Wizz Air started new services between Katowice and London Gatwick in 2008.[25] In January 2008, flights started from Gdansk to Gothenburg, Bournemouth and Coventry. In summer 2008, Wizz Air restarted summer seasonal services from Katowice and Budapest to Girona, as well as a new weekly service to Girona from Gdańsk. Other summer services from Budapest are Heraklion, Corfu, Burgas and Varna; from Katowice to Crete-Heraklion and Burgas; and Warsaw to Corfu and Burgas. It also restarted its three-times-weekly service from London Luton Airport to Burgas. On 2 October 2008, Wizz Air announced that a number of its Romanian services would have increased frequency following an order for three Airbus A320 aircraft.[26]

In February 2012, Wizz Air announced that it would start flights from Debrecen International Airport to London, beginning 18 June 2012.[27] On 11 September 2012, Wizz Air announced new routes to and from Tel Aviv, Israel.[28]

On 11 April 2013 Wizz Air announced that it would start flights from Budapest Airport to Baku's Heydar Aliyev International Airport starting from 17 June 2013.[29] On 26 June 2013, Wizz Air announced entry into the Slovakian market, adding one new route from Košice International Airport starting from September 2013.[30]

On 26 June 2015 the airline opened its 19th base, at Tuzla International Airport in Bosnia and Herzegovina and deployed one new Airbus A320 aircraft at the airport. With one aircraft stationed at the airport, Wizz Air opened new routes to Memmingen (near Munich) and Torp (near Oslo), commencing on 26 June 2015, as well as to Hahn (near Frankfurt) and Skavsta (near Stockholm), commencing on 28 June 2015.[31]

In February 2016 Wizz Air announced a new base at David the Builder Kutaisi International Airport (serving Kutaisi in Georgia).[32] In October 2016 Wizz Air announced a new base at Chișinău International Airport (serving Chișinău) in Moldova.[33] In December 2016 Wizz Air announced a new base in Varna, Bulgaria.[34]

In February 2017 Wizz Air announced a new base at London Luton Airport in the United Kingdom.[35] Also in 2017, the company added three new routes, to Tel Aviv, Israel, Pristina in Kosovo, and Kutaisi in Georgia, for a total of over 500 routes.[5]

Fleet[edit]

Wizz Air Airbus A320-200 in new livery

As of October 2017, the Wizz Air fleet consists of the following aircraft:[36][37]

Wizz Air fleet
Aircraft In service Orders Passengers Notes
Airbus A320-200 64 8 180
Airbus A320neo 72 180
Airbus A321-200 23 18 230
Airbus A321neo 184 239[38] Deliveries from 2019 to 2026
Total 87 282

Accidents and incidents[edit]

  • On 8 June 2013, Wizz Air Flight 3141, an Airbus A320-232 (registration HA-LWM) from Bucharest - Henri Coandă Airport, Romania to Rome-Ciampino, Italy, made an emergency landing[39] at Leonardo da Vinci–Fiumicino Airport when the crew encountered problems lowering one of the main undercarriages and locking it into position. The aircraft diverted to Fiumicino because of the longer runway, and firefighters applied foam after landing as a precautionary measure. The aircraft was evacuated using slides.[40] Initial reports of injured passengers were denied by both Wizz Air and Rome Fiumicino Airport, who said some passengers requested medical checkups but reported no injuries.[41]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "IATA - Airline and Airport Code Search". iata.org. Retrieved 1 May 2015. 
  2. ^ a b c d "Annual Results 2017" (PDF). Wizz Air. Retrieved 26 May 2017. 
  3. ^ "Hungarian Wizz Air Opens Fifth Hub in Poland". Business Week. Retrieved 2008-03-20. 
  4. ^ a b "Wizz Air". wizzair.com. Retrieved 13 June 2015. 
  5. ^ a b "Wizz Air profits soar amid strong demand for eastern European flights". The Irish News. Retrieved 2017-07-27. 
  6. ^ "Ryanair meets Wizz Air: does a merger make sense?". 2009-07-08. Retrieved 2009-07-28. 
  7. ^ "Wizz Air celebrates 10th birthday and 69 million passengers". Anna Aero. 21 May 2014. Retrieved 13 June 2015. 
  8. ^ "Company information (official registration number 13-09-096209)". Retrieved 16 February 2009. 
  9. ^ "Wizz Air: 15% wzrost, w Polsce tylko 2%". Retrieved 2011-01-07. 
  10. ^ "Wizz Air launches new cabin baggage policy". Wizz Air. 3 October 2012. Retrieved 13 June 2015. 
  11. ^ "LONDON STOCK EXCHANGE TODAY WELCOMED WIZZ AIR HOLDINGS PLC". 25 February 2015. Retrieved 4 April 2015. 
  12. ^ "Wizz Air Hungary, Laurus Offices, Kőér street 2/A, Building B, H-1103, Budapest, Hungary". Wizz Air. Retrieved 5 December 2016. 
  13. ^ "Property development." (Archive, also see image) Budapest Liszt Ferenc International Airport. Retrieved on 11 December 2011.
  14. ^ "While SkyEurope is sinking, Wizz Air is stretching wings". 29 June 2009. Retrieved 1 December 2009. 
  15. ^ "Maďarský Wizz Air skončil v desaťmiliónovej strate". 2009-11-26. 
  16. ^ "WizzAir suffers €9.5 million in losses". 27 November 2009. Retrieved 1 December 2009. 
  17. ^ "Why Europe's second lowest cost producer may be looking for fresh capital". 3 April 2013. Retrieved 3 April 2013. 
  18. ^ a b "CAPA Profiles Wizz Air: growing at 15% annually, one of Europe's most profitable airlines "not desperate" for IPO". 19 September 2014. Retrieved 20 April 2015. 
  19. ^ "WIZZ AIR UKRAINE ANNOUNCES 3RD LOW FARES BASE". wizzair.com. Retrieved 13 June 2015. 
  20. ^ "WIZZ AIR FURTHER RESTRUCTURES UKRAINIAN OPERATIONS". wizzair.com. Retrieved 13 June 2015. 
  21. ^ a b "Wizz Air Bulgaria - ch-aviation.com". ch-aviation. Retrieved 13 June 2015. 
  22. ^ a b "Wizz Air Romania - ch-aviation.com". ch-aviation. Retrieved 13 June 2015. 
  23. ^ http://www.airlinerworld.com/2017/10/wizz-air-prepares-for-brexit/?dm_i=4JU%2C590P3%2C9F2EGY%2CK83UQ%2C1
  24. ^ "Wizz Café and Wizz Boutique." Wizz Air. Retrieved on 3 February 2012.
  25. ^ "Wizz Air launches London Gatwick – Katowice flight". 2007-08-09. Retrieved 2008-05-05. 
  26. ^ "Wizz Air adds three new A320 aircraft and doubles capacity in Romania – 15 new routes in the next six months". 
  27. ^ "Wizz Air begins flights between Debrecen and London from 18 June 2012". 
  28. ^ "Wizz Air Launches Low Fares to/from Israel". 
  29. ^ "WIZZ AIR ENTERS AZERBAIJAN". wizzair.com. Retrieved 13 June 2015. 
  30. ^ "Wizz Air will start the route Košice-London in September! - Airport Košice". airportkosice.sk. Retrieved 13 June 2015. 
  31. ^ "Wizz Air to establish its 19th base at Tuzla in Bosna-Herzegovina". Retrieved 16 April 2016. 
  32. ^ "Wizz Air opens base at Kutaisi International Airport". Agenda.ge. 4 February 2016. Retrieved 5 February 2016. 
  33. ^ "Wizz Air announces 26th base in Chisinau, Moldova". Retrieved 14 August 2017. 
  34. ^ "Wizz Air announces 27th base in Varna, Bulgaria". Retrieved 14 August 2017. 
  35. ^ "Wizz Air announces UK base London Luton". Retrieved 14 August 2017. 
  36. ^ Airbus Orders and Deliveries (XLS), accessed via "Orders & Deliveries". Airbus. 31 May 2017. Retrieved 18 June 2017. 
  37. ^ "Global Airline Guide 2017 (Part One)". Airliner World (October 2017): 15. 
  38. ^ "Welcome to the world of opportunity! | Wizz Air". book.wizzair.com. Retrieved 2017-04-15. 
  39. ^ "Wizzair W6 3141 Bucharest – Rome emergency landing". planecrashes.org. Retrieved 13 June 2015. 
  40. ^ Andrew Frye (8 June 2013). "Wizz Air Flight Makes Emergency Landing in Rome". Bloomberg.com. Retrieved 13 June 2015. 
  41. ^ "Wizz Air jet makes safe emergency landing in Rome". Yahoo News. 8 June 2013. Retrieved 13 June 2015. 

External links[edit]

Media related to Wizz Air at Wikimedia Commons