Lufthansa will take more travelers to Lapland next winter. The German carrier will commence flights to Ivalo just before the winter season, on 17 December. The airline will provide flights on Saturdays until March 25.
This is already the sixth direct international connection to wintry Lapland. Previously introduced connections include routes to Kittilä and Rovaniemi, but now the path is clear to Ivalo, too. The magnificent northern nature, the Northern Lights and brilliant winter activities are only a few hours away from Frankfurt”, says Joni Sundelin, SVP at Finavia, the Finnish airport operator.
“After the successful introduction last winter of the connection to Kittilä, we will expand our offer to Ivalo, says Paulo Yoshikawa, Country Manager Finland, Lufthansa Group. “We are excited that winter sport activities here in Lapland see a growing demand, as it is also a good message for the local ski resorts and other tourism providers. Finally we welcome Finnish customers who use our nonstop flight to get to our main hubs with around 200 onward destinations.”
First, Lufthansa introduced a connection from Munich to Kittilä for last winter’s season. The connection will also be available next winter. Lufthansa doubled the number of flights due to high demand. Recently, Germania announced new connections between Berlin and Rovaniemi as well as between Düsseldorf and Kittilä, with Monarch also offering routes from London and Manchester to Kittilä.
Lufthansa is planning to use an Airbus A319 aircraft type for the new connection between Frankfurt and Ivalo.
Last year involved intense growth at Lapland airports; the total number of passengers exceeded one million. Statistics show that the growth continues. The number of international passengers in Lapland increased by 25.4% in the first part of the year compared to the same period last year.
Why are tourists and airlines interested in Lapland? The reasons can be found in the unique northern nature and wonderful tourism products: people are fascinated by reindeer rides, ice saunas and the Northern Lights. Some tourists go to the north because of the clean air. And, the Finnish Lapland is the home of Santa Claus!
“Airlines have noticed that the tourism products near Rovaniemi, Kittilä and Ivalo in particular ideally cater to the needs of potential passengers. And we should not forget that airport service prices for airlines in Finland are more inexpensive than those of many other winter destinations”, says Sundelin.
Tourism growth is also sought through the recently introduced stopover project with the goal of encouraging Asian customers in particular to stay in Finland between flights. Lapland is one of the destinations in the stopover product range.
Finavia will invest over €35 million in Lapland's airports in 2014–2016. The development work is especially apparent at Ivalo Airport, where Finavia performed an extensive terminal expansion last year.