Challenge Airlines will operate its inaugural flight out of Istanbul, Türkiye on 25 January 2023. The freighter will carry a mix of Türkiye’s main export products, including garments, fabrics, and automotive parts, from international customers.
The flight marks the start of the Challenge Group company’s first scheduled operations out of Istanbul Airport, linking Türkiye to Liège in Belgium, and from there to destinations across Europe, as well as to the US and Far East.
From the end of January onwards, Challenge Airlines will operate two Boeing 747F flights per week – on days three and seven – totalling a joint capacity uplift offer of 240 tons.
“As the world’s 29th largest exporter with one in two of its exports heading to Europe, Türkiye is a significant contributor to global trade, and Challenge Group, with our established Liège hub at heart of Europe, is a perfect business fit,” said Challenge Group’s commercial vice president Or Zak.
“Some three million metric tons are handled at Turkish airports each year. Istanbul, in particular, is deservedly making its way up the international cargo airports ranking ladder, and has long been of strategic interest to us. The airport is a fitting pioneer for our planned Group expansion on the east side of the globe.”