MIAMI – In November 2019 and March 2020, two Airbus A330-200 arrived at Atitech, Naples, Italy. And so, Luke Air (LKA) was born. Managed by the Uvet group, the new airline will be the heir of the current Blue Panorama Airlines (BPA).
Panorama Airlines has experienced a turbulent period in recent years, going from the extraordinary administration phase to the sale of the company to the group managed by entrepreneur Luca Patanè.
The birth of the airline
The “Luke Air” brand was conceived by the entrepreneur, a clear reference to his name, and with which the Uvet group intends to proceed with an expansion and renewal program involving the use of the Airbus A330 and the entrance of two further aircraft of the same type.
Luke Air’s target is the leisure sector, offering connections to various holiday destinations in the Caribbean and Africa, departing from Milan Malpensa and Rome Fiumicino.
Short-haul connections to Albania from various Italian cities are also on LKA’s route schedule, with seasonal flights to a number of Mediterranean and North African countries to be added later on.
Airbus Aircraft configuration
Luke Air aims to provide its passengers with a higher quality service than that of the now-defunct BPA; for example, on the Airbus A330-200, there are 12 lie-flat business class seats and about 250 economy class seats.
Aldo, the business class armchair has a pitch of 78 inches and a width of 22inches while in economy class, the seat configuration is 2-4-2 and each armchair has a width of 18 inches and a pitch of 32 inches.
In addition, each seat is equipped with a personal monitor and it is possible to connect with Wi-Fi during the flight.
The aircraft’s entry into service was scheduled for early April in Milan Malpensa (MXP) and Rome Fiumicino (FCO) airports, but the global Coronavirus pandemic postponed the launch.
The A330-200 are currently stored at the Neapolitan MRO (Maintenance, repair, and operations) Atitech, which has implemented the changes requested by the carrier pending the flights.
During this period, the company is planning on phasing out its older Boeing B767-300ER, which will be replaced by Airbus aircraft.
We hope that this can happen as soon as possible and that it can be a reason for the revitalization of the Italian aviation sector, which has experienced a complicated period, taking into account the closure of Air Italy (IG) and the loss of many jobs thereafter.
As we start to see signals of a gradual restart of worldwide operations, our hope is that Luke Air will fill the gaps left by other airlines in the region that have suffered in the wake of the pandemic.