Lufthansa reconfigures 747s in summer capacity rejig

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German flag-carrier Lufthansa is to adjust configuration of its Boeing 747-400 fleet as part of an adjustment programme that will cut capacity for the summer schedule by 0.5%.

Lufthansa is to reduce frequencies on some routes and combine certain flights, cutting the overall number of destinations by one to 206.

The carrier will operate 1.3% fewer weekly flights in summer 2009 - fewer European services but more intercontinental flights.

While Lufthansa has not detailed the breakdown in its premium and non-premium traffic, it is to reconfigure its 747-400 fleet with an extra 22 economy seats, a decision which will slightly raise capacity on intercontinental routes.

"We are optimising our offer of flights and are carefully and flexibly adjusting it to the corresponding demand for our routes," says Lufthansa's marketing chief for the passenger airline division, Thierry Antinori.

"We are deploying smaller aircraft in some areas and replacing non-stop flights with connecting flights in other areas, in order to continue to be able to provide our customers with a global network."

While Lufthansa's adjustments reduce capacity on its network compared with last year, it points out that this fall will be "compensated" by the launch of Milan's Lufthansa Italia operation.

Lufthansa says that, taking the effect of the Italia division into account, its overall capacity will effectively rise by 0.6% against last summer.