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ITA Airways, Limosani: "We strongly believe in the trade and continue to invest in it”  

By Wednesday, 06 March 2024 17:54

"We strongly believe in the trade and continue to invest in this relationship," said Emiliana Limosani, CCO of ITA Airways and CEO of Volare, speaking at the ITB travel fair in Berlin.

“We want part of our business and leisure product to be sold by the trade”  

That the value of the partnership "since the company was set up, is objectively at a delicate stage", has never been in question Limosani added. “On the contrary, it has been strengthened, so much so that today 65% of our worldwide turnover comes from travel agencies, tour operators and travel management companies. And this is not accidental because strategically and commercially speaking we want part of our business and leisure product to be sold by the trade.”  The ITA Airways roadshows are trade-oriented, and this year “the show has already started in Southern Italy where it will tour eight cities: we began in Cagliari, then on to Bari, followed by Naples, Venice and so on.” 

The importance of the German market

The airline is present on the Italian stand at the Berlin show, together with ENIT, the Italian National Tourist Board and the regions. “We like to present ourselves together and no longer in a fragmented fashion as in the past” to underline the importance of the German market for ITA's network. "Germany is one of our main markets in Europe, we have 76 frequencies a week from Rome Fiumicino mainly, but also from Milan Linate to Frankfurt, Munich, Stuttgart, Hamburg and Dusseldorf. From 26 May to 23 September we will also operate Linate-Rostock charter flights. The German market is important not only for point-to-point traffic but also with a view to the “sixth freedom” connecting these cities via Rome Fiumicino and then continuing on to our long-haul destinations. Long haul is very important for ITA. In 2023, out of a global turnover of €2.4 billion, of which 2.1 billion in passenger traffic, about half, and therefore €1 billion was from our long haul routes. And while 45% came from point-to-point passengers, the remaining 55% came from passengers connecting from Europe, like on the Stuttgart-Rome-Maldives, for example.” 

A loyalty programme for young travellers and a positive 2024

The ITB is also an opportunity to take stock of the carrier's loyalty programme. “From the 1.8 million members of two years ago we are  aiming for 2.6 million by the end of 2024. Today 63% are Italians and we continue to focus on the internationalization of the programme. Other novelties for the current year include the growth of partners, “who will increase from 25 to 41, thus more than doubling,” and the launch of a new “sub-programme, in addition to those for corporate and SMEs. It is called Avventura and is for children from 2 to 16 years of age, who will have their own personal card, and like the existing programmes is divided into four clubs, Smart, Plus, Premium and Executive. Children are our travellers of the future and we want to invest in them.”  Despite the difficult international geopolitical climate, "January and February have surprised us favourably. These so-called deep winter months have seen both leisure and business customers starting to diversify, and consequently we are able to work better. This year we are offering a further 37%, after the 60% increase in 2023.” 

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