Oh, Alitalia. The airline might be on the brink of liquidation for over a year now, but that’s not stopping them from expanding.
Alitalia Launching Flights To San Francisco
Alitalia has just announced an interesting new seasonal route launching in the summer of 2020.
Alitalia will operate 3x weekly flights between San Francisco and Rome in the summer of 2020. The route will operate from June 1 through October 28, 2020, on Mondays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. The schedule for the flight will be as follows:
AZ640 Rome to San Francisco departing 9:15AM arriving 1:15PM
AZ641 San Francisco to Rome departing 3:15PM arriving 12:15PM (+1 day)
The 6,264 mile flight is blocked at 13hr westbound and 12hr eastbound.
Alitalia plans to use a Boeing 777-200 for the route, featuring 30 business class seats, 24 premium economy seats, and 239 economy seats.
The new flight is already available for booking.
Alitalia’s Overall US Strategy & Competing With Air Italy
San Francisco will be Alitalia’s seventh US destination, as the airline also flies to Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, and Washington.
It’s interesting to note that historically Alitalia has been part of the SkyTeam transatlantic joint venture, which also included Air France-KLM and Delta. However, they’re in the process of being kicked out of that joint venture, as a new joint venture is being formed between Air France-KLM, Delta, and Virgin Atlantic. So that can’t be good for Alitalia’s yields on transatlantic flights.
It’s also interesting to me that Air Italy actually launched seasonal flights to San Francisco this past summer, so for now they’ve been the only Italian airline to fly to San Francisco. They’ll operate 5x weekly flights again next summer using an A330 between Milan and San Francisco.
While Air Italy operates to Milan rather than Rome, that’s still a fair bit of capacity between San Francisco and Italy.
Alitalia is fascinating. Even though the airline is constantly on the brink of liquidation, they continue announcing new routes as if nothing is going on. And fair enough, because that has been working for them, and when push comes to shove the Italian government won’t let them die.
This is a cool addition for the Bay Area, as there will be more connectivity between San Francisco and Italy this coming summer than ever before.
What do you make of Alitalia’s new Rome to San Francisco flight?