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Alitalia Returning to San Francisco????

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Here's a scoop:

Alitalia MAY be planning to restore nonstop service between Italy and San Francisco (SFO) as early as next year, according to this official Alitalia Press Release dated July 3, 2013:

http://corporate.alitalia.it/en/media/press-releases/03-07-2013.html

Note in particular the following text:

"New long-haul routes with high potential
New long-haul routes with high traffic potential to/from Italy will be identified and introduced. The new routes will operate mainly from the hub of Rome Fiumicino and the airports of Milan Malpensa and Venice.

The new intercontinental destinations which may be introduced between Winter 2014 and Winter 2016 are Nairobi, Seoul, Santiago de Chile, San Francisco and Johannesburg from Rome. Shanghai, Abu Dhabi and Osaka from Milan Malpensa; Tokyo from Venice.

The launch of the new routes will be combined with the strengthening of the Alitalia presence through increased frequencies to North and South America (especially the United States and Brazil), Japan and the Arabian peninsula."

The same press release notes that Alitalia will be adding SIX new long range aircraft to its fleet (another source reports two new Boeing 777s and four new Airbus 330s). The Airbus 330s will reportedly be refurbished to increase seating capacity from 230 to 255, by reducing the number of Economy Plus seats.

The press release also notes that departure times at Rome Fiumicino Airport may be changed to optimize connections within Italy to other airports served by Alitalia.

There has previously been speculation of an Alitalia return to SFO (the carrier suspended service there on September 30, 2001, after operating flights with the Boeing 767-300 for only one or two years).

Stay tuned for more!

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