In next five years Polish flag carrier LOT plans to be twice as big an airline as it is now, which is good news as its still relatively unknown to the International market even though it has been flying for 86 years. Planning on carrying 10 million passengers a year by 2020, LOT plans to have also almost twice as big a fleet as currently and 60% more flights. This week, as the tip of the iceberg, the carrier has announced it will be starting five new long-haul connections next year. Three of these are to Asia – Tokyo, Seoul and Bangkok, with the other two to be announced this autumn. To support the long haul network more than a dozen European connections have just been announced.
The first route to be launched will be Tokyo – interestingly it will also be the first direct connection from Poland and ‘New Europe’ to Japan. The first flight is scheduled for 13th of January, The next connections – to Bangkok and Seoul – will start in autumn 2016 giving the airline a chance to perfect their long haul product before their aggressive roll out.
“Opening new long-haul destinations is a condition for our development, which is why we launch them as quickly as possible. Even now, connections operated by Dreamliner are the most profitable part of the business. LOT is the only airline that offers on a larger scale convenient, regular flights from Poland and New Europe to New York, Chicago, Toronto and Beijing. This means that after opening five new destinations next year, LOT will more than double its network of long-haul connections compared to the present one. We wish our hub to develop along with us. Opening more than dozen European connections guarantees even more convenient transfers for new groups of passengers from Poland and the whole region. But the new connections are not everything yet. Next year we plan to enhance our presence in those destinations, where we already operate. This means, for example, an increased frequency of flights to Chicago and New York in the winter season.” – says Sebastian Mikosz, CEO of LOT Polish Airlines.
Spearheading their long haul experience is the carrier’s 787 fleet, which features the Aura flat bed product, premium economy and economy classes. LOT’s 787-8 features 18 fully flat-bed seats, which offer comfort, space and fully forward facing seats. The 2 x 2 x 2 seats mean that window seat passengers do have to climb over their neighbours, to get to the aisle, so the middle seats are perfect for those who don’t want to be disturbed through the flight.
The premium economy seats are more like regional business class seats, featuring the standard 38″ seat pitch at 19.5″ wide seats. situated just behind the door, they also allow passengers to be some of the first to exit, increasing their speed through immigration. Naturally being a Dreamliner, the cabin offers lower pressurisation, greater humidity, and those fantastically futuristic electronically tinted windows. which will be great news to the economy cabin which features 3 x 3 x 3 seating, an industry standard, and 32″ seat pitch.
We look forward to LOT’s impressive expansion plans, and with very affordable prices, LOT may be one very competitive new carrier connecting Europe to Asia. We hope to give you the low down on the product in the near future.