Ryanair adds new routes from Stockholm

Discount airline Ryanair announced plans on Tuesday to add four new routes to eastern Europe from Stockholm’s Skavsta airport.

Ryanair adds new routes from Stockholm

Starting in late October, travelers will be able to fly from the Swedish capital to the eastern European capitals of Prague in the Czech Republic and Warsaw, Poland.

New routes will also serve the Polish cities of Krakow and Lodz.

The low-price carrier sees the expansion, which also includes increased capacity on existing routes from Stockholm to Berlin, Milan, Riga, and Eindhoven, as a direct challenge to national carrier Scandinavian Airlines (SAS).

“Swedish passengers have grown tired of SAS’s unreasonably high prices and unnecessary fuel surcharges,” said Ryanair’s marketing director Dara Brady in a statement.

“With these new routes, Ryanair will carry 2.5 million passengers annually to and from Stockholm Skavsta for a fraction of SAS’s higher prices.”

SAS has struggled to manage the duel challenges of increasing operation costs and tighter competition in the European airline market, with its shares having lost around 80 percent of their value in the last year.

In May, the company introduced a €10 ($15.54) fuel surcharge to domestic ticket prices and a €15 charge for flights in the rest of Europe in an effort to offset the costs of rising fuel prices.


‘We agree to disagree’: Still no progress in marathon SAS strike talks

By lunchtime on Friday, talks between the Scandinavian airline SAS and unions representing striking pilots were still stuck on "difficult issues".

'We agree to disagree': Still no progress in marathon SAS strike talks

“We agree that we disagree,” Roger Klokset, from the Norwegian pilots’ union, said at lunchtime outside the headquarters of the Confederation of Swedish Enterprise in Stockholm, where talks are taking place. “We are still working to find a solution, and so long as there is still some point in continuing negotiations, we will do that.” 

Mats Ruland, a mediator for the Norwegian government, said that there were “still several difficult issues which need to be solved”. 

At 1pm on Friday, the two sides took a short break from the talks for lunch, after starting at 9am. On Thursday, they negotiated for 15 hours, breaking off at 1am on Friday morning. 

READ ALSO: What’s the latest on the SAS plane strike?

Marianne Hernæs, SAS’s negotiator on Friday told journalists she was tired after sitting at the negotiating table long into the night. 

“We need to find a model where we can meet in the middle and which can ensure that we pull in the income that we are dependent on,” she said. 

Klokset said that there was “a good atmosphere” in the talks, and that the unions were sticking together to represent their members.

“I think we’ve been extremely flexible so far. It’s ‘out of this world’,’ said Henrik Thyregod, with the Danish pilots’ union. 

“This could have been solved back in December if SAS had not made unreasonable demands on the pilots,” Klokset added. 

The strike, which is now in its 12th day, has cost SAS up to 130m kronor a day, with 2,550 flights cancelled by Thursday, affecting 270,000 passengers.