The German airline Eurowings, member of the Lufthansa Group ranked as the best airline in Germany in 2017, launched two new routes from Košice to Düsseldorf and Munich today. Košice and eastern Slovakia is now connected with the second (Munich) and the third (Düsseldorf) largest airport in Germany and with the whole network of destinations from these two airports (operated by Eurowings and, in the case of Düsseldorf, operated also by Lufthansa). Passengers from the eastern Slovakia and surrounding regions will be able to use connections to 160 destinations in more than 50 countries.

Düsseldorf route will be operated four times a week, departing from Košice on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday afternoon, with a Dash Q400 aircraft with a capacity of 76 seats. The route to Munich will be operated twice a week, on Friday and Sunday departing from Kosice in the evening with an Airbus A320 aircraft with capacity of 150 seats.

Long-awaited direct connections between Košice and Germany with attractive flight ticket prices are warmly welcomed by Eurowings´ customers what is proved by high demand for both routes. Tickets are available at in fantastic prices starting at the level of 19.99 € (one way including fees).

There were 67 passengers on the first flight from Düsseldorf to Košice and 73 passengers departed to Düsseldorf. This represents 88% load factor on arrival and 96% on departure. On the first flight from Munich to Košice 111 passengers arrived and 120 passengers departed from Kosice to the metropolis of Bavaria, 74% load factor on arrival and 80% load factor on departure.

Košice Airport has achieved a great success on 13th March this year in online voting competition “Vote & Fly” organized by Eurowings. In the final round of voting Košice received 61% of all votes during the 1 hour live internet voting. This was especially the result of the enormous involvement of the whole community of Eastern Slovakia and fans of Košice Airport. Thanks to this, Košice has now a direct connection with the two most populous German federal states: North Rhine-Westphalia with Düsseldorf and Bavaria with Munich.

Michael Tmej, Chief executive officer and chairman of the management board of Košice International Airport: "We are delighted that Eurowings launched two new routes from Košice and we welcomed the first passengers from Düsseldorf and Munich today. These routes open enormous potential for the tourism development of Eastern Slovakia and also arrival of new foreign investments into our region. The success in the "Vote & Fly" competition has confirmed that if the Slovaks put all their efforts together they can achieve great things. It is an important milestone for us and we would like to thank to all our partners for their cooperation in developing Eastern Slovakia."

Frank Nikolaus, Area Senior Manager Eurowings: “We are very pleased that new routes have been launched today from Düsseldorf to Košice and from Munich to Košice. The connection with Munich will be operated twice a week with our modern fleet of Airbus A320 aircraft and the connection with Düsseldorf will be operated up to 4 times a week by Q400. Eurowings has more than 10 million social networkers and Košice was a winning destination in the online competition "Vote & Fly". We believe that the beginning of our cooperation will also significantly contribute to the development of tourism in Slovakia.”

Richard Raši, Deputy Prime Minister of the Slovak Republic for Investment and Informatization: “The Eastern Slovakia will move forward and its growth will continue. Two new direct flights to Düsseldorf and Munich and a rich connectivity from these two huge airports in Germany will help to build a strong cooperation with Germany that is one of the most important partners of the Slovak Republic. These direct flights will help the Government of the Slovak Republic in acquisition of foreign investors for eastern Slovakia which will reduce regional disparities around the country, as one of the key assessment criteria for foreign investors is air accessibility. The eastern Slovakia's connectivity from Košice airport is really excellent, and the Slovak government has another strong argument for foreign investors to establish or expand their activities here.”

Rastislav Trnka, President of Košice self-governing region: “Germany is one of the most important markets in terms of visitors to our region. I perceive this airline as a great opportunity that it would be a “sin” not to use. On the one hand, it extends travel opportunities and at the same time contributes to the development of tourism. On the other hand, it helps to develop business relations, especially the possibility of investing in Košice self-governing region, and will have a positive economic impact. Other cooperation options that will lead to increased living standards are unlimited, it is just necessary to start to fly and network. That is as well the reason why I have decided to use the first flight from Košice to Düsseldorf to visit the Innovation and Technology Center (part of the European Silicon Valley) and also to meet representatives of the city of Düsseldorf and Rhineland-Württemberg to discuss development opportunities. Very soon we plan to arrange a similar business trip to Munich.“

Martin Petruško, Deputy mayor of Košice: „I am very pleased that two new direct flights have started today, which will help the city Košice as the most dynamically developing city in Slovakia. Thanks to them, Košice will be even more attractive city for foreigners and especially for German investors in this case. We have already several very important German investments in Košice and I am convinced that new routes will help us to get even more investors. However, I would also like to mention that direct connections will also increase and develop tourism. Košice is becoming more and more popular in Europe and it is starting to be an attractive tourist destination. Now Košice will be even more easily accessible to German tourists and this will be a powerful motivation to develop and improve tourism in our country. I am convinced that tourists will like Košice and they will be happy to return again. I am sure that during their next visit they will not only stay in Košice, but they will also travel further to another parts of Košice and Prešov region.“

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