Icelandic low-cost carrier PLAY launches New York route to Stewart International

T. Schneider /

Icelandic low-cost carrier PLAY is launching a new route between Europe and New York, expanding its services to the United States.  

The airline, which started operations in 2021, said its first flight to New York will be on June 9, 2022 and that it intends to operate daily flights.  

PLAY will be flying to New York Stewart International Airport (SWF), which is approximately 60 miles north of Manhattan. Its first US routes will be to Boston and Washington DC.  

The carrier said it will be much cheaper to operate from SWF, and that because it is a smaller airport, passengers will benefit from shorter waiting times at security, customs and baggage reclaim. Despite being further away from Manhattan than JFK and Newark airports, PLAY said the time taken to travel to central New York City from landing will be comparable.  

“This decision enables us to offer the lowest prices on flights between New York and Europe as we get a good deal being the first airline operating international flights from the airport,” Birgir Jónsson, PLAY chief executive said in a statement on February 1, 2022.  

PLAY intends to operate to 25 destinations in the US and Europe in summer 2022, using Iceland as a stepping stone for connections to Europe. It plans to be operating six new Airbus A320 family aircraft by then. It says transatlantic flights will be “a major factor in its business model.” 

Low-cost long-haul rival Norse Atlantic Airways is also reportedly planning flights to SWF from Norway, although hasn’t officially announced routes yet. The carrier received approval to operate flights between Norway, the European Union and the United States on January 14, 2022.   


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