Swiss will replace its four daily flights between Zurich and Lugano with the same number of flights subcontracted to Cirrus Airlines as of April 1. Under the wet-lease agreement, the German carrier will use 50-seat de Havilland Dash 8-300s in a mixed configuration.
The Dash 8 can legally fly all IFR approaches authorized at Lugano and can meet stricter steep approach rules scheduled for introduction in November next year. The Saab 2000 used by Swiss for flights into Lugano is restricted to a mixed IFR approach/VFR landing from the north. Northerly winds and limited visibility prevented landings at Lugano with this procedure for up to one-third of scheduled flights during winter months.