Jet2.com announces more sun routes for winter 2018/19 from Glasgow Airport

The UK-based flight and holiday company Jet2.com has announced the addition of more flights and holidays from Glasgow Airport to sun destinations such as the Canary Islands, Spain and Portugal for winter 18/19, with over 20,000 additional seats on sale.

The company has announced that 11 additional flights to the Canary Islands will go on sale for the next Christmas and New Year period. The extra services are to popular sun destinations such as Tenerife, Lanzarote, Alicante, Majorca and Faro.

Steve Heapy, CEO of Jet2.com and Jet2holidays, said: ‘This is great news for holidaymakers looking for some winter sun out of Glasgow Airport, particularly over Christmas and New Year. The strong demand for our award winning flights and great value package holidays means we are totally committed to growing our operation at Glasgow Airport, and this announcement today shows that.’

The additional flights and holidays include two additional services to Tenerife on December 27 and December 31, as well as extra weekly services in March/April; and three additional Wednesday services to Gran Canaria over the Christmas holidays and New Year, on December 19, December 26 and January 2, 2019. Jet2.com will also operate three additional Friday services to Fuerteventura on December 21 and December 28 and January 4, 2019.

In addition, Jet2.com has added a second daily service to Lanzarote on Sundays over the Christmas holidays and New Year period on December 23, December 30 and January 6.

For the first time, Jet2.com and Jet2holidays will add six services to Malaga from Glasgow with the addition of six services on December 21, December 23, 28, and 30 and on January 4 and 6. The company is also offering additional services on Mondays and Fridays from February 8.

Further, Jet2 is offering additional Monday services to Alicante starting February 4, taking the total to five weekly services during winter; additional Sunday services from March to Majorca, taking it three weekly services during this period; two additional weekly services to Barcelona on Thursdays and Sundays in January offering year-round service from Glasgow and two additional services to Faro in late-November.

All tickets are available to book at www.jet2.com or www.jet2holidays.com, the company said.

British holidaymakers eye Portugal and Spain amid security issues in Egypt, Turkey

British tourists are increasing turning to destinations like Portugal and Spain for their holidays this summer, while previously popular destinations of Egypt, Turkey and Tunisia are being dropped for security reasons, according to a report by The Telegraph.

Citing figures, the report noted that reservations for Portugal have increased by nearly 32 per cent, while that to Spain has seen a 27 per cent rise, with other destinations like Cyprus and Malta also figuring in the sought-after list.

Meanwhile airlines and travel groups are registering a drop in business to traditionally popular destinations like Tunisia and Egypt, following terrorist incidents and changes to Foreign Office travel advice. Turkey has seen reservations drop by 50 per cent following a bomb blast in Istanbul last month, which saw ten people killed in a busy tourist area, the report noted.

Following the trend, travel group ABTA has issued a notice to tourists to book their holidays early this year. Mark Tanzer, ABTA Chief Executive, said: ‘The significant increase in summer holiday bookings to western Mediterranean destinations is also being mirrored in other Northern European markets.

‘So it makes it more important than ever that customers book early to obtain the best value and ensure they get the holiday of their choice.’

Besides, amid rising demand for the supposedly safer destinations, many of the airlines are now diverting flights to high-demand areas.

Last week Thomas Cook has said that it has moved 400,000 seats from Turkey to Spain, while tour operator Thompson said it has increased capacity significantly to Spain to meet the demand. Monarch airlines said that the eight flights a week schedule which were previously going to Sharm-el-Sheikh, in Egypt, had all now been diverted to Spain following the ban of all UK airlines to the site, which saw 38 people gunned down on a beach last year.

Citing the latest data from the Office of National Statistics, the report added that UK residents are taking more overseas holidays than ever. The Travel and Tourism report showed Britons made 13.4million visits abroad in the three months to December 2015, an increase of 10 per cent compared with the same period a year earlier, the Telegraph added.

Flybe expands summer 2016 schedule from Southampton

The UK-based regional airline Flybe has announced upgrades to its 2016 summer programme with additional frequency and return of popular summer sun routes to Spain and Portugal.

The European budget airline has expanded its 2016 summer schedule from Southampton Airport with the return of popular sun routes to Alicante, Malaga, Palma Mallorca and Faro. Seats are available for booking from £50.99 including taxes and charges. The airline has also increased summer frequency on some other key routes including many serving regional France.

Under the expanded schedule, starting March 30 to October 29, Flybe will operate a thrice weekly service to Alicante, increasing to daily flights from May, with double daily flights available on Wednesdays during August. From July 1 to October 28, flight services will be operated to Malaga on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sundays.

In addition, starting May 22 to October 29, Flybe will operate four flights a week to Palma Mallorca on Monday, Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday. Additional Friday flights will be operated from July 1 to September 30, with double daily flights on Wednesdays and Saturdays during August. From July 2 to October 27, Flybe will now offer a thrice weekly service on Tuesdays, Thursday and Saturdays to Faro operated using a 118-seat E195 jet.

Furthermore, Flybe has increased services on many of its most popular French regional routes, including those to Brest, Limoges and Perpignan. Daily flights will be operated to Bordeaux and Rennes, and double daily to Bergerac in August, daily flights to La Rochelle between July 1 and September 3 as well as three flights a week to Verona during August.

Under the extended 2016 Summer schedule, Flybe now offers 25 routes from Southampton offering passengers a choice of up to 329 flights a week to an extensive range of destinations.

Giving customers a chance to visit some of the sought-after sun destinations and new cities, the airline has also launched its biggest sale of the year offering one million seats available across its network from £27.99 one way including taxes and charges. Bookings can be made until midnight on Tuesday January 12, 2016 at www.flybe.com effective for travel between February 1 and July 20, 2016.

easyJet opens Porto base, announce three new UK routes

UK-based low fares airline easyJet has announced the opening of its new base at Francisco de Sa Carneiro Airport Porto. Three new UK routes from Manchester, Bristol and London Luton Airports to the new Porto base are set to be launched this summer.

Flights from Bristol to Porto will start on April 19, and operate on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays. Fares start from £22.99 per person. Manchester flights to Porto will commence on May 24 with fares starting from £28.99 per person, while flights from London Luton to Porto will commence on April 26. Fares start from £42.99 per person.

Speaking at the official inaugural ceremony at the new Porto base, Carolyn McCall, Chief Executive of easyJet, said: ‘Portugal is a really important market for easyJet. We have been flying to and from Portugal for 18 years and today represents another important milestone in our history.’

‘We are really pleased to demonstrate our long-term commitment to Portugal with the opening of our second Portuguese base, following the launch of our Lisbon base in 2012.’

‘Establishing a base in Porto will create 80 new easyJet jobs, fully under Portuguese labour contracts, and support many more new jobs at the airport and in the surrounding region. As importantly it will enable easyJet to increase the region’s connectivity with the rest of Europe and to make travel easy and affordable for those who wish to fly to and from this wonderful city.’

Maria Luis Albuquerque, Portugal Minister of Finance, who also attended the ceremony, said: ‘The opening of an easyJet base in Porto is yet another sign that the Portuguese economy is steadily recovering and becoming an increasingly attractive destination for investment.

The establishment of new routes will certainly favour the tourism sector, but also facilitate business relations between Portugal and Europe, thus contributing to a deeper integration. Most importantly, this new base will lead to job creation, which is the ultimate goal of our country’s ongoing efforts.’

Porto is easyJet’s 25th base, and the airline is set to open its 26th base in Amsterdam on March 31. easyJet started its operations in Portugal in 1999 and flies to Faro, Funchal, Porto and Lisbon. Starting March 29, the airline will also launch a service connecting the capital with Ponta Delgada in Azores.

 

British Airways launches new flights to Portugal and Greece from Heathrow

British Airways, the UK’s national carrier, is planning to launch new flights from Heathrow to Oporto in Portugal and Mykonos and Santorini in Greece for the summer of 2014.

The airline will start operating twice-weekly flights to Oporto from March 30, to Mykonos from May 3 and to Santorini from May 4. Tickets for flights from London to all three destinations are now available for sale on ba.com.

From March 30, the airline will also start twice-weekly flights from Heathrow to Malaga and Faro. This move is intended to give travellers more choice regarding their departure airport, as the routes are already served by British Airways from Gatwick and London City. Faro will also benefit, as the airline is set to increase the Gatwick service from 8 to 14 services a week next summer.

British Airways services from Heathrow to Palma de Mallorca, Ibiza, Rome, Basel, Zurich, Amsterdam and Aberdeen will all benefit from frequency increases during the summer.

Lynne Embleton, director of strategy, said: ‘We want to give our customers even more great destinations to choose from next summer. We believe the introduction of Oporto, Mykonos and Santorini will prove very popular with holiday-makers looking for summer sun and the start of flights to Faro and Malaga from Heathrow, plus the increase in frequencies to a number of popular summer routes will give them even more choice.’

As part of its summer 2014 offer, British Airways Holidays is offering seven nights at the Scorpios Beach Apartments & Studios, Santorini, from £399 per person for travel in June, including return flights from Heathrow and accommodation with breakfast. The airline is also offering seven nights at the Pelican Bay Art, Mykonos, from £539 per person for travel in June, including return flights from Heathrow and accommodation with breakfast

A three-night break in Oporto is offered at the Mercure Porto Centro hotel from £299 per person for travel in June, including return flights from Heathrow and accommodation only.

All British Airways flights include a free cabin baggage allowance, free on-line check-in and seat selection 24 hours before departure, and complimentary food and drink on board.

Portugal to capitalise on surf record

Tourism authorities in Portugal are to capitalise on a recent surfing record that was set in the nation, in order to boost tourism.

Portugal took the opportunity to promote its beaches when Hawaiian extreme surfer, Garrett McNamara, broke a world record this week by catching an, estimated, 100-foot wave off the Portuguese fishing village of Nazare. Now tourism officials are working overtime to capitalise on the development and attract more surfers like McNamara to the waves.

The tourism department is also turning to good use the negative publicity that the coast around Nazare has traditionally had. There is a saying that in Nazare, ‘the ocean is known as a place of death, not of riding waves.’ Now, the department is looking to use the saying as a challenge to promote the area to intrepid surfers.

Portugal’s tourism office said, ‘We have 450 miles of clean Atlantic coastline and some surfing beaches that are out of this world.’ The department was not exaggerating, because the unique geography of Nazare creates giant waves that are truly out of this world. Even though the country’s Algarve and Cortegaca regions draw plenty of surfers, it is Nazare’s giant waves that give seasoned surfers a true rush of adrenalin.

Climatologists offer many reasons for the huge waves that are common in the region. Some believe that big storms in the North Atlantic during the winter push swells toward Europe. Added to this is the fact that Nazare has a 1,600-foot-deep undersea canyon, which points like an arrow toward the town, and there are enough scientific reasons to explain the giant waves that can strike awe into those who set out to capture them. Water travelling over the canyon is calm due to its depth, and when the waves crash into the shallow shore they have nowhere to go but straight up. This happens so suddenly that the effect is awesome. Nazare’s waves also have another unique selling point, wave riders come very close to the cliff, which adds to the thrill.

McNamara said, ‘There is nowhere in the world even remotely like it for enjoying the power and size of waves so close. It is mesmerizing to sit on the cliff and watch the waves and there is nowhere like it. But all I feel is that we will be able to share this place with a few more people.’

Enterprise Launches Operations in Portugal

Car rental company, Enterprise, is launching its operations for the Enterprise Rent-A-Car brand in Portugal, through a franchise.

The company has appointed Guerin Car Rental Solutions as its franchise partner in Portugal, increasing its operations in Europe to six countries, including the UK, Germany, Ireland, France and Spain.

Peter A Smith, the vice president of global franchising for the company, said, ‘While this may be the first franchising agreement for the Enterprise Rent-A-Car brand, it won’t be the last. In fact, we plan to continue this same growth strategy throughout Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia.

We’re careful to choose strong, stable domestic businesses as our international franchise partners, and Guerin certainly meets that standard as a well-respected travel industry leader in Portugal’

Jim Burrell, the senior vice president for Europe, said, ‘We are committed to developing a comprehensive network of rental car businesses across Europe and beyond.

Since arriving in Europe in 1994, Enterprise has developed a strong brand presence through our corporately owned locations across the UK, Germany and Ireland. But our strategy is to be where our customers need us. Today this brings us to France and Spain with a well-established network of 350 branches and an outstanding and committed team of people.

From here we will quickly look to establish businesses in other markets as our customers’ needs extend beyond our current operations. We will seek to do this in the way that best suits the needs of each market, through affiliates, franchisees and other wholly owned operations’

Enterprise is also re-branding its newly acquired Citer and Atesa operations in France and Spain. The re-branding will add 350 new locations to the company’s car hire network. Today, the European Enterprise Rent-A-Car network operates more than 100,000 vehicles.

TAP Portugal Announces Campaign to Promote Its Service in UK

TAP Portugal, a Portugal based airline, is launching a marketing campaign for its route from the UK, to Lisbon Airport in Portugal.

The new daily service from Manchester Airport, to Lisbon Airport, has been recently extended from a five day a week service.

The newly expanded service commences from October 28, 2012, with the airline offering twin-class fares, which include complimentary food and drink, complimentary advance seat choice, a 23kg baggage allowance, and the Executive and Victoria frequent flyer services.

The airline is extending the Anglo-Portuguese connection to become the main air carrier between Portugal and the UK.

The airline’s new campaign is intended to attract British travellers flying to Portugal, and includes the launch of around one hundred branded taxis, and several posters in Manchester Piccadilly station to promote the route.

With this extension, the total number of flights offered by the airline increases to 74 every week. The airline’s winter schedule for 2012 for British residents include 46 flights every week from Lisbon to London, 14 flights from Porto to London, seven from Funchal to London, and seven from Lisbon to Manchester. The airline is currently also offering a service from London Heathrow airport in the UK to Funchal International Airport in Madeira, Portugal.

The airline has commenced its services on the Lisbon to Manchester route in June 2011, and is currently flying the sector with a load factor of 84 percent, as reported in July 2012. Since its inception, the airline has flown around 48,000 passengers on this route within one year of service.

Currently, the airline is hosting the 9th Fraud Prevention Meeting of European Airlines at its headquarters in Portugal, in an effort to find solutions to fraudulent practises that are cheating airlines each year.

TAP Portugal Increases Service to UK

TAP Portugal, a Portugal based airline, has announced an increase in its flights to the UK.

The airline is extending the Anglo-Portuguese connection by increasing its five- times a week service from Manchester Airport in UK to Lisbon Airport in Portugal to a daily service.

The newly expanded service commences from October 28, 2012, with the airline offering twin-class fares, which includes complimentary food and drink, complimentary advance seat choice, a 23kg baggage allowance, and the Executive and Victoria frequent flyer services.

With this extension, the total number of flights offered by the airline increases to 74 every week. The airline’s winter schedule for 2012 for British residents includes 46 flights every week from Lisbon to London; 14 flights from Porto to London; seven from Funchal to London; and seven from Lisbon to Manchester. The airline is currently also offering a service from London Heathrow airport to Madeira airport, Portugal.

The airline commenced its services on the Lisbon to Manchester route in June 2011, and is currently flying the sector with a load factor of 84%, as reported in July 2012. Since its inception, the airline has flown around 48,000 passengers on this route within one year of service.

The airline, which serves a total of 75 destinations in 35 countries, is also the main carrier between the UK and Spain. The airline is currently trying to increase its reach to more destinations in North and South America, and Africa.

The airline, however, in the first half of 2012, registered a loss of €112 million, suffering from industrial action in the sector, which had a direct impact of €21.6 million. Half yearly revenues, however, increased by 9.3% from the same period in 2011, to €1.084 billion.

Portuguese ATC Strike Set To Cause Disruption

Travel disruption is expected this weekend as air traffic controllers from Portugal’s air navigation services provider, NAV, prepare to step up their strike action.

Airline passengers travelling to or from Portugal this weekend should be prepared for delays and cancellations as the nation’s air traffic controllers begin three days of strikes. The workers are planning intermittent, two-hour strikes throughout Thursday, with a 24-hour strike planned for Friday, meaning that the disruption continues into the weekend.

The planned work stoppages are the latest action taken by air traffic controllers in an ongoing protest against government plans to cut salaries and restructure the sector as part of Portugal’s economic austerity plan.

The strikes will hit the flight plans of many of Europe’s major airlines, including Ireland-based Ryanair, considered to be Europe’s largest no-frills carrier, which has confirmed a number of flight cancellations due to the disruption. The action has caused the airline to call on the European Commission to remove the right to strike from air traffic controllers in Europe, to bring them in line with most of Europe’s police forces and army personnel, and air traffic controllers in the USA.

Ryanair’s Stephen McNamara said, ‘The summer schedules in Europe are just weeks’ old and already the Portuguese air traffic controllers will be engaging in three days of strikes. The solution to this problem is simple, remove their right to strike in exactly the same way that air traffic controllers in the USA are prevented by law from striking.’

In a statement, the British Foreign Office said, ‘Disruption to flights to and from Portugal on these dates may be experienced as a result. Travellers are advised to contact their travel company or airline for further information.’