TUI announces flights and holidays to Montenegro from Birmingham Airport

TUI, one of the UK’s leading holiday brand – formerly known as Thomson, has announced the launch of a flight service to Podgorica, Montenegro from Birmingham Airport for summer 2018.

The decision to add Montenegro to the network is part of TUI’s plans to offer more choice to customers flying from their local airport and staying at hotels that TUI and First Choice offers, including the brand new 4Sun Holiday Village Montenegro.

The capital city of Montenegro, Podgorica is the official commercial and cultural centre. It is built amongst five rivers, the Zeta, Moraca, Ribnica, Cijevna and Sitnica – the modern Millennium Bridge over the Moraca River, and the stone bridge spanning the Ribnica River are key attractions. Podgorica was rebuilt following WW2, with modern buildings and public parks. Podgorica hosts a number of cultural events and has many theatres, such as Crnogorsko Narodno, Gradsko and Dodest, along with the National Park Skardarsko or Skadar Lake, the biggest lake in Balkan.

Tom Screen, Acting Aviation Director at Birmingham Airport, said: ‘Montenegro is a great destination for TUI to add to its summer 2018 flying schedule. It will be popular with holiday makers as it has stunning mountains, breathtaking beaches and an interesting local culture. We are delighted TUI has chosen to expand its choice of destinations from Birmingham Airport.’

Karen Switzer, Director of Aviation Planning for TUI UK & Ireland, said: ‘It is great to see the first customers heading off on their holidays to one of our newest destinations. We have expanded our programme from Birmingham Airport for summer 2018 and now customers from the Midlands have over 60 destinations to choose from when deciding where to book their holidays.’

Flights will operate once a week every Wednesday until the middle of October. Customers can also book for next year as flights and holidays to Montenegro are already on sale for summer 2019. Seats and holidays can be booked at www.tui.co.uk.

Primera Air announces winter schedule at Birmingham with four new destinations, direct transatlantic flights

Icelandic low cost airline Primera Air has announced its winter schedule at Birmingham Airport with flight services to Tenerife, La Palma, Alicante, Malaga and Reykjavik.

‘Midlands travellers have shown great interest in our Spanish leisure destinations and it gives us confidence that our winter flights will give them improved flight options,’ said Primera Air’s Chief Commercial Officer Anastasija Visnakova. ‘We’re happy that Reykjavik is our first short haul Northern European destination out of UK. For an airline, whose roots stem from Iceland, it is also a somewhat symbolic move’ Ms. Visnakova added.

For winter 2018, Primera will operate flight services from Birmingham: to Alicante starting December 6, on Thursdays and Sundays, with prices starting from £35.00; to Tenerife starting December 8, 2018, on Saturdays, with fares from £49.00; to La Palma starting December 7, 2018 on Fridays with fares from £49.00; and to Reykjavik starting December 9, 2018 on Sundays with fares from £69.00. In addition, Primera will commence services to Malaga starting May 19, 2018, on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays, with fares from £35.00. All fares are one way.

In addition, the Nordic airline is extending its Birmingham-New York and Birmingham-Toronto flight schedule through November. ‘We are beginning our transatlantic flights to North America in just a few weeks and the final preparation stage is truly exciting! The fact that we’ve already created more than 250 jobs here, clearly shows that the UK market is at the core of our business plan, and travelers can expect to see even more transatlantic and European destinations from our UK bases in the future,’ said Ms. Visnakova.

William Pearson, Aviation Director, Birmingham Airport added : ‘We are delighted that Primera Air has added Reykjavik to its growing network of routes from Birmingham Airport. The choice of additional winter flights with Primera Air and the extension of the transatlantic routes to Toronto and New York shows the demand within the region. Primera Air offers a fantastic service on board its brand new aircraft with prices to European destinations from £35.00 and transatlantic from £149.00 one way.’

In addition, Primera Air is planning to open new bases in Birmingham, London Stansted and Paris Charles de Gaulleto commence flights to New York, Boston, Washington DC and Toronto this April along with new routes from UK to Malaga, Palma de Mallorca, Alicante, Barcelona and Chania, Birmingham Airport said.

Jet2.Com and Jet2holidays announce summer 2019 flights and holidays from Birmingham

Leisure airline and package holiday specialist Jet2.Com and Jet2holidays has announced its summer 2019 programme from Birmingham Airport with the introduction of four new destinations, more Boeing 737-800 aircraft to its fleet, and over 1.6 million seats on sale, representing 30 percent capacity growth.

Jet2 will fly to 41 sun and city destinations in summer 2019, including four new destinations – Kefalonia, Pula, Verona and Bergerac. The company will operate weekly services to the island of Kefalonia between May and September; weekly Sunday services between May and September to the Adriatic Coast of Pula, Croatia; weekly Saturday services to Verona between May and October and weekly Saturday services to Bergerac, providing direct access to the famous Dordogne region of south-west France.

In addition, holidaymakers will be offered more flights and holidays to destinations such as the Balearic Islands, Canary Islands, Mainland Spain, the Algarve, Greece, Cyprus and Turkey. The additional flights and holidays include a total of 22 weekly services to Canary Islands with more services to Tenerife, Gran Canaria, Fuerteventura and Lanzarote; 13 services per week to Alicante; 12 weekly services to Malaga, up from nine in Summer 2018 and 15 flights per week to Faro, as compared to 11 previously.

Further, Jet2 is offering an increased number of services to Majorca with up to 19 flights every week during peak season; an addition of a second Sunday service to Ibiza offering up to eight flights every week; two services every week to Madeira as against once previously; five weekly services to Antalya compared to three services previously; five services a week to Crete, plus longer season; three weekly services to Rhodes, with the addition of weekend flights; the addition of a third weekly service to Larnaca with extended seasons; the addition of a fourth weekly service to Paphos, operating a total of seven weekly flights to Cyprus (including Larnaca) and extended to Prague all through the summer, with two weekly services.

Steve Heapy, CEO of Jet2.com and Jet2holidays said: ‘We are putting our biggest ever summer programme on sale from Birmingham Airport, with four brand new destinations and over 1.6 million seats going on sale for Summer 19, our third summer at Birmingham. The addition of more Boeing 737-800 aircraft represents another huge investment in our base here, and gives local holidaymakers even more choice and flexibility with our award winning airline and tour operator.

‘Yet another summer of huge growth here at Birmingham Airport is only possible thanks to our loyal customers, and it shows that our hard work in offering them great value package holidays and family friendly flights is working. We’re not done yet, so keep an eye out for even more great Summer 19 news from your local airport!’

Tom Screen, Acting Aviation Director at Birmingham Airport, said: ‘Jet2.com and Jet2 holidays are both very popular family friendly brands that have established themselves well within the Midlands travel market over the last two years. This extra capacity means that Jet2.com will be our third largest carrier in 2019 and we thank the team for its continued commitment in Birmingham.

‘We welcome the addition of four new summer sun destinations for 2019, giving more choice to our leisure passengers looking to visit the Mediterranean. It shows capacity is continuing to grow year on year from Birmingham with Jet2.com and Jet2 holidays which continues to create great job opportunities.’

Primera Air to commence direct services to US, Canada, Spain from Birmingham Airport

Icelandic leisure airline Primera Air has announced plans to launch direct low-cost services from Birmingham Airport to New York, Toronto, Malaga, Barcelona, Palma and Crete, effective from May.

The airline will commence its services on May 14 to Malaga and Palma, with New York launching on the May 18 and Toronto on June 23. Crete will start on July 30 and Barcelona on October 1. Flights will operate to New York four times weekly and to Toronto three times per week. Malaga, Palma and Barcelona will operate daily and Crete each Monday. New York and Toronto fares start from £149.00 (one way, all taxes included). Malaga, Palma and Barcelona start from £35 and Crete from £54. Tickets are available on sale via www.primeraair.co.uk, the airport said in a release.

Anastasija Visnakova, Chief Commercial Officer, for Primera Air, said, ‘We are proud and excited to place Birmingham on our route map for 2018. With two transatlantic and four short-haul destinations we are opening our operations here and looking forward to further development of this Primera Air base.

‘This is an important first step for us and significant development for Birmingham Airport and region. With the technology that our brand new fleet offers expensive transatlantic travel becomes a thing of history’.

Chairman of Birmingham Airport, Tim Clarke, said, ‘Primera has seen the enormous opportunities available in the Midlands thanks to its strong trading and cultural links with the US and Canada, and the leisure travellers’ desire to escape to warmer Mediterranean climes.

‘Primera is able to offer low fares due to its brand new fuel efficient Airbus A321 Neos which means that these services are accessible to all pockets – whether travelling on holiday, visiting loved ones or flying for business.’

The airline, which launched its new base in Birmingham recently, will operate brand new Airbus A321 Neos, configured with 16 premium economy seats and 182 economy seats. The new-generation aircraft allows airlines like Primera to fly on routes usually served by wide-body jets. Passengers can also use Wi-Fi on board and the aircraft has full charging facilities for their devices.

Air India commences Birmingham-Amritsar direct service

Air India has commenced its new twice weekly non-stop service from Birmingham Airport to Amritsar, the Airport said in a release.

Flights will operate on Tuesdays and Thursdays, departing Birmingham at 1845 hours, reaching Amritsar early the next morning at 0745 hours. From Amritsar the flight departs at 1355 hours arriving into Birmingham at 1715 hours the same day. The service will be operated using a Boeing 787-8 series aircraft, with 256 seats in a split cabin, comprising 18 flat beds business class seats and 238 economy seats. Tickets are available to book at www.airindia.in.

William Pearson, Aviation Director, Birmingham Airport, commented: ‘We are proud to say we are offering a totally unique route, as Birmingham is the only UK airport offering a direct service to Amritsar.

‘The Midlands has the second largest Asian community in the UK and so it is great news that we are making more of India accessible to our passengers for business, leisure and to visit family and friends.’

Tara Naidu, Regional Manager – UK & Europe of Air India, said: ‘Amritsar is an important spiritual centre for the Sikh faith being home to the Golden Temple as well as being a major commercial and cultural centre in the heart of the Punjab.

‘The Sikh community has long awaited this direct route and so we are sure it will be as popular as our Delhi service from Birmingham.’

Vishwanath Panyam, Manager- Birmingham, Air India said: ‘The addition of Amritsar is great news for our passengers offering greater choice, flexibility and convenience.

‘The celebrations for the inaugural flight yesterday were fantastic and show the amount of excitement and support for this route.’

Air India also operates an established Delhi service from Birmingham Airport which started in August 2013. The service has carried more than 600,000 passengers in the four years it has operated using the popular Boeing 787-8 ‘Dreamliner’ aircraft.

Air India to commence UK’s only direct Amritsar service to Birmingham in February

Air India, the flag carrier airline of India, will commence a non-stop service to Amritsar from Birmingham Airport on February 20, 2018, the UK’s only direct service to Amritsar.

Amritsar, the home of the Golden Temple, offers direct access to the major commercial and cultural centre in the heart of the Punjab. This new route complements the airline’s Birmingham-Delhi service which started in August 2013.

The new twice-weekly flight will operate on Tuesdays and Thursdays, departing Birmingham at 1845 hours, reaching Amritsar early the next morning at 0745 hours. From Amritsar the flight will depart at 1355 hours arriving into Birmingham at 1715 hours the same day.

William Pearson, Aviation Director, Birmingham Airport, commented: ‘It is great news that we will have direct non-stop connections to two Indian cities from Birmingham Airport with Air India. With over 200,000 British-Indian people who travel to India each year to visit friends and relatives, and for tourism and business interests, this additional destination shows the large demand within the region for direct Amritsar services from the Midlands. Air India has been a successful partner for over four years and offers great connections to India with services operated by the new Boeing 787-8 ‘Dreamliner’ aircraft.’

Pankaj Srivastava, Director, Commercial and Board Member of Air India said: ‘We are delighted that we are commencing direct services between Birmingham and Amritsar twice weekly, starting in February, recognising the consumer demand from the Midlands’ region to Amritsar, Punjab. Air India is always very sensitive to the needs of the consumer and is pleased to be connecting the two important cities thereby adding a new city pairing for Air India’s expanding global network with the only non-stop UK Amritsar service.’

Vishwanath Panyam, Senior Assistant, General Manager, Air India said: ‘This service is in response to long standing demands between the Punjab and the UK Midlands. We expect this flight to be very popular and may lead to future growth.’

The flight will be operated on Boeing 787-8 series aircraft featuring 256 seats in a split cabin, with 18 lie flat business class seats and 238 economy seats.

Birmingham Airport announces experience improvement programme

Birmingham Airport has said that it has commenced a multi-million-pound programme of development works to improve the passenger journey through the airport terminal.

The development works include revamping the security processing area to provide more boarding card gates, a dedicated security preparation area and a refreshed waiting area with new flooring and lighting. Additional staff are also being recruited in key customer facing areas, including terminal operations, customer relations and security officers.

Commenting on the plan, David Winstanley, COO for Birmingham Airport, said, ‘This investment comes following record passenger growth and to ensure that we’re prepared for the coming summer period where the airport will welcome new long-haul services to New York, Boston and Toronto, as well as many new popular short haul destinations.

‘The service we give our customers is an absolute priority for us so we’re investing a great deal to improve the airport journey for them.’

The Airport is also expanding its retail and catering offer. It has recently opened The Factory restaurant as well as added Kurt Geiger to its airside shopping experience. In spring, a new Bottega prosecco bar will open as well as wrapchic – an Indian inspired burrito and sandwich outlet.

Further, the Airport is building a covered walkway to the terminal from the free drop off car park, and a new 178-guestroom Hilton Garden Inn hotel will open in the summer. New digital wayfinding and signage will also be introduced before the summer season.

In addition, the airport said that a job fair will be held at the airport. Details are available at: www.birminghamairport.co.uk/careers, it added.

Emirates commences second daily A380 service from Birmingham to Dubai

Emirates has said that it has commenced its second daily A380 service to Dubai from Birmingham Airport.

The second daily service comes following increased demand from customers and after nearly two years of its inaugural A380 flight from the city. Emirates’ second flight EK39 departs from Dubai at 07:25 hours and arrives in Birmingham at 11:25 hours. The outbound flight, EK40, departs from Birmingham at 13:30 hours and arrives in Dubai at 00:35 hours the following day.

Laurie Berryman, Emirates Vice President, UK, said: ‘The launch of the second daily A380 service shows our continued commitment to this important route, allowing more passengers travelling from Birmingham to take advantage of our A380 to A380 connectivity via Dubai.

‘Thanks to its strategic position in the Midlands, the route allows both visitors and businesses to travel to Dubai and beyond from the heart of the UK. Now in its seventeenth year, we have seen a pronounced growth in the popularity of our Birmingham service and look forward to a bright future with our twice daily A380 service.’

William Pearson, Aviation Director commented: ‘We are delighted that Emirates has launched a second A380 service from Birmingham to Dubai with this iconic aircraft. Emirates’ hub in Dubai offers connections to 154 destinations, over six continents, giving our region’s travellers global connectivity with an award-winning airline.

‘Having this additional capacity on the lunchtime service to Dubai and onwards ensures flexibility and choice for passengers and also shows the commitment that Emirates has in the Midlands region.’

Since the launch of the first A380 service on March 27, 2016, the airline has flown nearly 500,000 passengers on the aircraft between the two cities. Passengers travelling in Business Class are offered a dedicated lounge at Birmingham Airport as well as Emirates’ Chauffeur-drive service to and from the airport within a 70-mile radius.

Emirates started flying between Birmingham and Dubai on December 18, 2000, operated by a 278-seat Airbus A330. Since then, the airline has carried over 5.2 million passengers between Dubai and Birmingham, the Airport noted.

Primera Air announces new route to Toronto from London Stansted, Birmingham

Danish airline Primera Air has announced plans to launch a new transatlantic route from its new bases at London Stansted Airport and Birmingham with direct flights to Toronto, starting next summer, reports said online.

Starting June 2018, the Danish airline will offer three flights a week all year round from Stansted to Toronto, Canada’s top destination. Primera Air has also announced a direct flight to Toronto from its new base in Birmingham. The new Birmingham-Toronto route will also be served three times per week on a year-round basis and will commence in May 2018.

The Toronto service is in addition to Primera Air’s recently announced daily services to New York’s Newark Airport, which will begin in April 2018, and the four departures a week to Boston Logan Airport from May next year.

Andri M. Ingolfsson, Primera Air president and chairman, said: ‘Yet again, we are very proud to announce our new direct routes from our European bases to Canada.

‘With our brand new Airbus321NEO aircraft, we are opening routes previously traditionally served only by wide-body aircraft. With unmatched efficiency of these new-generation aircraft, we will be able to offer unprecedented prices to our passengers from the UK to USA and Canada. At the same time, we are very proud to be offering a low-fare/high quality product and service concept, that will be perfect both for leisure and business travellers.’

Ken O’ Toole, London Stansted’s chief executive, said: ‘The announcement of Primera Air’s new service to Toronto is yet another fantastic addition to Stansted’s rapidly growing route network and comes hot on the heels of the airline’s exciting news it will launch direct flights to both New York and Boston next year.’

William Pearson, aviation director at Birmingham Airport, said: ‘It is welcome news that Primera Air is expanding its choice of popular Transatlantic destinations from Birmingham by adding a new route to Toronto.

‘Demand for travel to US and Canadian destinations from the West Midlands is high and Primera Air is offering fantastic seat prices meaning it is likely Toronto will be very popular.’

The new Toronto flights will be operated using Primera Air’s new Airbus A321NEO aircraft that offers a choice of two cabins – full-service premium and low-fare economy – along with free Wi-Fi and onboard charging points.

Primera Air to start transatlantic flights from Birmingham

Primera Air, an Iceland-based low cost airline, is set to start transatlantic flights from Birmingham Airport to New York and Boston in May 2018.

The new services from Birmingham to US will commence in May 2018 and will be year-round operations. Primera Air tickets are now on sale, with fares starting from GBP149.00, one way, all taxes included. Tickets are available to book on www.primeraair.co.uk.

The new PrimeraAir service to New York will depart from Birmingham daily with Boston departing on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays.

William Pearson, Aviation Director, commented: ‘We are delighted to be entering in to a partnership with an additional transatlantic airline. Primera Air will offer daily flights to New York and give passengers the chance to visit Massachusetts’ capital and largest city – Boston. This is a brand new route from Birmingham so we are delighted that Primera Air will give people from the region the opportunity to visit this city direct from their local airport.

‘Primera is a low cost, low fares airline that will appeal to all. With its offering of premium economy and economy seats it really does mean that America is just across the pond. We look forward to working with Primera Air and are delighted that they will base these brand new Airbus321NEO’s here at the Airport.’

Andri M. Ingolfsson, the President and Chairman of Primera Air, said: ‘We are very proud to announce our new bases and routes to US. With our brand new Airbus321NEOs airplane, we are opening routes previously traditionally served only by wide-body aircrafts. With unmatched efficiency of these new-generation aircraft, we will be able to offer unprecedented prices to our passengers from Birmingham to the US. At the same time, we are very proud to be offering a low-fare/high quality product and service concept, that will be perfect both for leisure and business travellers.’

As part of the plan, the airline will base its brand new Airbus A321 Neos, configured with 16 premium economy seats and 182 economy seats, at Birmingham Airport. Passengers will be able to use Wi-Fi on board and the aircraft has full charging facilities for devices.