Meridiana fly close the base of Florence. Is the end of a dream?
Meridiana fly say good bye to the base of Florence. Its a strategic decision made by the new management lead by Cpt. Giuseppe Gentile. In the new plans of Meridiana fly there is no space for Florence considered not huge productive. Its not clear how many flights are dropped considering the factor that Amsterdam was dropped recently and Catania, Barcelona reduced. The future is dark for Florence due to Barcelona will stop on Aug 27, Madrid now daily in September is twice a week only in the weekends and ceased by Oct 10 2011. London Gatwick now is available for ticketing only until Oct 29. The winter time reports flights only to Olbia (2xweek), Catania (4xweek), Cagliari (daily).
In the past Florence was a key gateways since the brand change from Alisarda to Meridiana had in 1991 with four BAe146/200s bought for this task. To aim the Florence revamp was the strategy with several gateways served like Muncih, Paris, Frankfurt, London, Amsterdam, Barcelona and in Italy (Catania, Palermo, Olbia, Cagliari) equipped with a shortest strip of 1400m now extended to 1650m.
The change of planes from Whisperjet to A319s was a good goal in term of capacity increased and better performances. Equipped with a special performance software named Florence kit, the A319 all former Sabena was a new workhorse for expanding Florence. But new capacity went in conflict with lack to land from runway 23, the hillside. Florence lives together to ranges on the flightpath of runway 23 and they limits the operations due to the LDA on that side is on 975m. Florence currently rates the 4% of diversions every year and that cost too much to airlines.
The recent introduction of new Alitalia flights to Amsterdam and Catania has marked the sunset for Meridiana fly operations to Florence. The next step was yesterday with inside of the airline announcement to close the base of Florence. Right about 20 years from start up of Meridiana with operations commenced on Sept 1 1991.