PRAGUE - Smartwings has signed wet-lease contracts in other countries to utilize its aircraft in winter. The largest Czech air carrier has won tenders for the lease of Boeing 737-800 aircraft with crews to two Israeli airliners, Israir Airlines and Arkia, and to US-based Swift Air. A total of 6 Smartwings aircraft will be stationed in Israel in winter. Another three will be leased to the USA under an ACMI (Aircraft Crew Maintenance Insurance) contract.
Israeli air carrier Israir will operate 5 Smartwings airplanes and Arkia another one. The lease to Israel’s Israir Airlines builds on previous partnership from this spring (May 2021), when Israir leased two airplanes from the Smartwings fleet (a Boeing 737-800 and a 737MAX). Smartwings and Israir Airlines have also entered into a code-share agreement under which Smartwings aircraft will operate scheduled flights between Prague and Tel Aviv as of December 1. The code-share agreement builds on a successful long-term business partnership between Smartwings and Israir Airlines.
From the Tel Aviv hub, Smartwings aircraft will serve a wide range of Israir’s destinations (Prague, Athens, Budapest, Batumi, Kyiv, Larnaca, Sofia, Rome, Munich, Tbilisi, Berlin). The aircraft leased to Arkia will operate scheduled flights from Tel Aviv to Dubai, Marrakesh, Athens, Rome, Amsterdam, Barcelona, and Yerevan.
Another three Boeing 737-800s from the Smartwings fleet will be stationed in the USA for the winter season. Smartwings signed a wet lease contract with US-based airline carrier Swift Air LLC for 3 airplanes with complete crew. The Smartwings aircraft will be based in Milwaukee, WI (2 airplanes) and Lansing, MI (1 airplane) and will be deployed on flights to Mexico, the Dominican Republic, and Jamaica.
“Every such contract will help us secure jobs for our skilled employees in the winter season when the demand for air travel in Europe is lower, as the air transport industry has been recovering from the coronavirus crisis while facing continued restrictions,” says Roman Vik, board member and CEO, Smartwings.
Over its nearly 25 years of existence, Smartwings has worked with dozens of airlines around the globe under so-called ACMI contracts for the lease of aircraft with crew, maintenance and insurance. Smartwings found utilization for its aircraft for the summer season, too, leasing two of its airplanes with crews to Air Serbia, the Serbian national air carrier. Smartwings is the largest Czech airline company. Besides the Czech Republic, Smartwings operates flights also from airports in Poland, France, Germany (newly as of October), Hungary, Slovakia, and the Canary Islands.
Besides scheduled and charter flights, Smartwings also provides a wide range of special flights for international sports clubs and major humanitarian and athletic organizations worldwide.
Under the winter flight schedule, Smartwings offers services from Prague to London (Heathrow); Dubai; four Canary Islands (Tenerife, Gran Canaria, Lanzarote, Fuerteventura); Málaga; Tel Aviv; Mallorca; Madeira (Funchal); Hurghada and Marsa Alam, Egypt. Charter flights will be dispatched to Cape Verde (Boa Vista, Sal), Oman a Egypt.