June 25 was a key date for Play, the new low-cost Icelandic airline. Its first Airbus A-321 operated the first commercial flight of the company from Reykjavik to London Stansted.
Born from the idea of former WOW management members, Play started to look for investors last year. Two years after the first idea, Play is up and running after it was granted an AOC and receiving it’s first Airbus A321 Play slowly starts to operate flights from Iceland to western Europe.
Over the various interview, Birgir Jonsson, its CEO, is consistent and clear about the path the company intends to follow. Although it will retain a lot from the WOW handbook, it will learn from the purple planes’ airline.
The first destinations are only in western Europe, and there is no rush to link North America. There is even no intend to use wide-body aircraft. As per Jonsson, this was one primary reason why WOW Air went under early 2019.
As of now, the future looks bright for Play. Play sees a good demand, especially for July and August, with two main drivers.
Iceland is one of the few destinations that remained on a green status during the pandemic and reopened quickly. Europeans are eager to find covid save destination and the demand rise from capitals as London, Paris or Frankfurt.
Icelanders also want to find some warm weather after over a year where leisure travel was not easy. Barcelona Allicante and Teneriffe are their picks.
“The demand is really good, especially later this summer, Many here have become sun-thirsty.”Birgir, Jonsson on Bloomberg
The company didn’t only start flying. It also launched an IPO on the Nasdaq First North Growth Market Iceland.
Play says the proceeds are intended to enhance the company’s financial position and working capital, supporting growth and ramp-up. It adds that they will allow “more flexibility” in terms of the ramp-up timing, enabling it either to accelerate or delay the plan.
Trading of Play airline shares is expected to start on July 9.