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Last year, United Airlines began operating a route between Malaga and New York, becoming the only airline to offer nonstop service between the United States and Malaga. This direct flight, which takes approximately 8 hours, resumed on May 4. Starting this July, it will become a daily service instead of the three weekly frequencies it used to have in its first year of operation. The seasonal service with daily flights will continue until September 25, allowing the airline to triple the number of seats offered compared to 2023.

United Airlines continues to be the only airline offering direct flights from the United States to Dubrovnik, Malaga, Mallorca, and Tenerife, and stands out as the U.S. airline with the most direct destinations from Spain. The route between Malaga and New York is crucial for the airport, as it facilitates access to the entire American continent and allows easy connections to both the East and West Coasts with short layovers. Besides, Americans, Canadians, and Mexicans can reach Malaga comfortably and directly.

The expansion of routes in Spain in 2024 highlights United Airlines' leadership among U.S. carriers, solidifying its position as the largest airline across the Atlantic with direct flights from 37 transatlantic destinations for the summer of 2024. Antonio de Toro, United Airlines' Head of Sales in Spain, emphasizes the importance of Malaga in the airline's offering in the Spanish market, considering it a highly attractive destination that provides numerous opportunities for travelers and perfectly complements United's other routes in Spain and Portugal. The United Airlines team is proud of the excellent reception this route has received and is excited about the growing interest Americans have in discovering the wonders of the Costa del Sol and Andalucia. If the positive trend continues next year, United will explore new growth opportunities, which could include making the route permanent, increasing the aircraft capacity, or extending the season.

The Malaga Airport: Unprecedented Growth

The expansion of United Airlines and the remarkable development of Malaga Airport are clear indicators of the growing importance of this destination in the global aviation landscape. Malaga Airport is the fourth busiest in Spain in terms of traffic volume and the first in Andalucia. Since January, it has been consistently reaching new milestones, operating in May at a pace comparable to the best summer in its 105-year history. The activity on the runways has been notable, with an average of 516 flights and over 76,000 people passing through the terminals each day.

This significant increase has resulted in another remarkable achievement: in June, the Costa del Sol connected with 153 destinations, specifically 36 cities in 38 countries, through 261 routes. This has become possible thanks to the contributions of 65 airlines, helping Malaga Airport achieve an unprecedented volume of direct flights to numerous cities in Europe, as well as its growing expansion to the Middle East and North America. In terms of the number of connections, Malaga Airport is surpassed only by the airports of Madrid, with 202 destinations; Barcelona, with 200 destinations; and Palma de Mallorca, with 187.

During the 30 weeks of the summer season, airlines have scheduled 20 million seats on 109,800 flights, marking the largest offering in the airport's history. These figures are highly favorable and underscore a significant competitive advantage. Moreover, Malaga Airport holds special appeal at the Andalusian level, as many travelers from other provinces in the autonomous community, such as Almeria, Cadiz, and Huelva, travel there to catch their flights.


The expansion of routes and significant development of Malaga Airport reflect the growing importance of this destination in global aviation. Collaboration with airlines such as United Airlines has been fundamental to this success, enabling direct connections with major international destinations. This progress not only consolidates Malaga Airport as a key hub in Andalusia but also creates new opportunities for tourism and business, strengthening its competitive position globally.

Published: 04 Jul 2024

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