Saaremaa flight link tender contested again

A Jetstream 32 operated by Transviabaltika.
A Jetstream 32 operated by Transviabaltika. Source: Transaviabaltika

A tender to operate a subsidized air service between Tallinn and Kuressaare, the capital of Saaremaa island, has yet again been contested, in a process which has been ongoing since 2018.

The current tender holders, Lithuanian airline Transaviabaltika, whose aircraft had previously been declared too elderly, will continue to operate the service for the time being.

A total of five carriers filed their tender offers for the €16.8 million contract to operate the service, with Estonian carrier Nyxair OÜ picked.

This outcome was challenged by Regional Jet, a subsidiary of state-owned airline Nordica, however.

Transaviabaltika appealed that decision; the terms of the tender had said that aircraft manufactured after 2000 should be used. Transaviabaltika's Jetstream 32s are older than that.

Diamond Sky, which runs a service to Ruhnu island, and Latvian cargo carrier RAF-AVIA, also applied for the original tender.

Nyxair, founded in 2017, the original winner of the Saaremaa tender, is also starting to operate two domestic routes in Sweden this week.

The routes are from Stockolm Bromma Airport to Malmö and to Angelholm-Helsingborg, using two Saab 2000s, which the company is leasing.

This brings the number of services Nyxair operates from Bromma to seven.


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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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