ITA Airways Launches Direct Route Connecting Chicago and Rome

ITA Airways Launches Direct Route Connecting Chicago and Rome

The Chicago Department of Aviation (CDA) joined representatives from ITA Airways and the Consul General of Italy in Chicago to celebrate the launch of the carrier’s new service from O’Hare International Airport to Rome-Leonardo da Vinci Fiumicino International Airport (FCO) in the Italian capital.

“On behalf of Mayor Brandon Johnson and the entire City of Chicago, I thank our partners at ITA Airways for their investment in the Chicago market,” said Commissioner Jamie L. Rhee of the CDA, which owns and operates Chicago O’Hare and Midway International Airports. “O’Hare is serving its largest number of Italian destinations ever in 2024, and this new route will help connect the people of Chicago to all of the rich culture and history that Rome has to offer.”

“We are proud to be here today and launch the new nonstop flight between Chicago and Rome,” said Emiliana Limosani, Chief Commercial Officer of ITA Airways and CEO Volare, who was present to celebrate the inaugural flight this afternoon. “This new destination, the seventh in North America, further enriches the intercontinental network of ITA Airways and consolidates our expansion towards the United States, which is the first international market for our Company. The multiple services from Rome Fiumicino connecting to New York, Boston, Washington, Miami, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and the newly opened Chicago enhance our efforts to be the reference carrier from the United States to Italy and via Rome to Europe and the Mediterranean for the Italian community, the international business communities in North America as well as the major communities in the Mediterranean region”.

The route’s inaugural flight departed O’Hare at 3 p.m. aboard an Airbus A330neo aircraft. CDA staff joined ITA Airways executives and Thomas Botzios, the Consul General of Italy in Chicago, for a ceremonial ribbon-cutting at Gate M29 in Terminal 5 to commemorate the departure.

“Chicago’s enduring status as a world-class destination is thanks, in large part, to our two airports and their connections to the world,” said Rich Gamble, Interim President and CEO, Choose Chicago. “We are thrilled to celebrate the launch of ITA Airways new direct service to Rome, and we look forward to welcoming more visitors from Italy and across Europe to explore everything that Chicago has to offer.”

The route, which is ITA Airways’ seventh connection to North America, will operate six times per week, increasing to seven times per week in June.

The summer of 2024 will be the first time O’Hare has ever offered direct flights to three Italian cities, with American Airlines launching seasonal service to Venice in June and resuming its summer seasonal service to Rome. United Airlines also operates summer seasonal service to Rome as well as summer seasonal service to Milan.

O’Hare is also anticipating a broad increase in international air service this summer, on the heels of strong year-over-year passenger growth in 2023. O’Hare will serve 67 international destinations this July, up from 65 in July 2019.

Notable air service developments at O’Hare this year include Cathay Pacific increasing its Hong Kong service from three to five times per week as of March 31, which improves access to Hong Kong, Mainland China and Southeast Asia.

Beginning on May 23, United will launch daily, summer seasonal service to Athens, Greece. American also offers summer seasonal service to Athens.

Service to Canada will also increase from carriers at O’Hare. United will launch new daily services to Winnipeg and Quebec City on May 23. WestJet will also offer significantly increased frequencies on its Calgary service from O’Hare this summer, operating daily between late June and August.​

This spring, Frontier Airlines is also increasing its service with nine new routes at O’Hare while maintaining strong operations at Midway. In April and May, the carrier will launch new services from O’Hare to Charlotte, North Carolina; Dallas; Denver; Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina; Las Vegas; Nashville, Tennessee; Portland, Maine; Houston; and Philadelphia.


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