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Icelandair Says Hello to Detroit: Flights Launch in May 2023

The airline will launch four weekly non-stop seasonal flights between Reykjavik and Detroit for the summer season

by Enrique Perrella

November 26, 2022

The Monument to Joe Louis, known also as The Fist, is a memorial dedicated to boxer Joe Louis located at the intersection of Jefferson Avenue and Woodward Avenue in Detroit / Photo: Helgidinson/Adobe Stock

Icelandair continues its expansion into North America by adding its 15th U.S. and Canadian destination from its hub in Reykjavík. The Icelandic flag carrier will launch seasonal flights from Detroit in May, just in time for the busy summer season.

With a robust U.S. network, already linking Iceland with Orlando, Raleigh-Durham, Baltimore, Washington D.C., New York, Boston, Chicago, Minneapolis, Denver, Portland, Seattle, Montreal, Toronto, and Vancouver, Icelandair continues to increase its presence in North America by offering connections to more than 25 destinations in Iceland, Greenland, and Europe.

The new flights to Detroit are set to begin on May 18 and end on October 30, operated by one of the airline’s 12 Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft, equipped with 16 seats in Business Class and 144 in Economy Class.

“These new flights will not only help meet the demands of a growing Detroit but also offer more options for Midwestern business and leisure travelers connecting from the Midwest region,” said Bogi Nils Bogason, president and CEO of Icelandair Group.

Icelandic bay. Photo: Courtesy of Norris Niman / Unsplash

Passengers flying with Icelandair from Detroit can take advantage of one of the airline’s ‘Stopover in Iceland’ perks, which grants the opportunity to stay in Iceland for up to seven nights when flying on a connecting itinerary. Moreover, the airline’s CEO noted that these new flights will offer customers various in-flight amenities, including “gate-to-gate Wi-Fi and inflight entertainment available for all passengers.”

The new flights are set to depart Reykjavik at 5 p.m., arriving in Detroit at 6:25 p.m. local time. The plane then returns to Iceland, departing at 8:30 p.m. and arriving in Iceland the following morning by 6:30 a.m.

“Thanks to Icelandair, the beauty of Iceland is now a short flight away from Detroit,” said Chad Newton, CEO of the Wayne County Airport Authority. “At Detroit Metropolitan Airport, we know our customers have a choice when they fly. We believe nonstop flights to Iceland and the opportunity to connect to exciting cities throughout Europe are two more reasons travelers will choose DTW.”

Adding Detroit to the airline’s growing network signals that Icelandair is on its path to recovering its positive pre-pandemic operating numbers. The carrier recently reported that its capacity in October reached 99 percent of what the airline logged in 2019, scoring a healthy average load factor of 80.2 percent during that period.

Photo: Detroit’s skyline. / Courtesy of William Duggan / Unsplash

In addition to Detroit, Icelandair also announced the addition of Prague and Barcelona to its seasonal European network. In June, the airline will begin flying to Prague—an all-new destination—and return to Barcelona in April.

The airline’s CEO said he and his team are happy to add Prague and Barcelona to its summer schedule. “This is the first time we have offered scheduled flights to Prague, and we see great opportunities in the convenient connecting times to our flights to and from North America,” he said. “This way we can increase connectivity between the two markets as well as connecting the people of Iceland and Prague.”

Overall, Icelandair is continuing to recover with an ever-growing list of summer destinations and improved capacity and load factor performance. With summer demand already showing high bookings between the U.S. and Europe, the airline will try and grab a piece of the coveted transatlantic market with its famous stopover programs and competitive fares.