Business Travellers Boost easyJet Books

easyJet has announced that its effort to lure in the business traveller has not only worked, but done wonders for its passengers and books.

Revenues were up for the final quarter of 2014.

The first TV advert by the airline targeting the business travellers aired last year and as a result, business travel was up in October – its busiest ever.

The airline also allured to the fact that it might review fares later this year. Given the drop in oil prices easyJet, in the first half of the year, could expects its fuel bill to be up to £35million lower than the previous year, equating to as much as £130million for 2015.

Gatwick Lose and Win Council Support

This week Gatwick Airport found out the supporting and non-supportive views of surrounding councils.

East Sussex County Council has voted to back the Airport’s expansion plans.

However, Crawley Borough Council has against supporting the second runway bid by Gatwick.

The votes are part of the public consultation period, which ends on 3rd February.

Both decisions will be put forward to the Airports Commission, who will in turn submit final recommendations to the Government – for either Gatwick to expand to a two runway airport or Heathrow to expand to a three runway airport.

Crawley Borough Council Oppose Gatwick Expansion

Today, it has been announced that Crawley Borough Council have voted to oppose Gatwick’s expansion bid – to build a second runway.

All Councillors attended the Extraordinary Meeting of the Full Council yesterday evening – Monday 26th January – apart from Liam Marshall-Ascough (Con, Southgate).

The independent vote, whereby Councillors could vote as they saw fit, not influenced by their own party’s views was carried out after much debate on the subject.

The results saw 25 votes opposing expansion verses 11 in support of the expansion.

The decision, to oppose the Gatwick expansion, will now be put forward to the Airport’s Commission’s public consultation.

Thomas Cook Airlines Increase Belfast to Florida Flights

Three more flights each week between Belfast International Airport and Belfast have been announced by Thomas Cook Airlines.

The move sees the airline doubling its Florida flights for the Summer season, using the latest A330 aircraft.

Speaking about the announcement, Graham Keddie, Managing Director at Belfast International Airport, said, “This expansion of services to Florida will be a big hit with local holidaymakers who now have more choice direct from their local airport. We are delighted that Thomas Cook is continuing to expand in the Northern Ireland holiday market.

Airline Profits to Soar From Falling Oil Prices

Airlines are viewing 2015 with renewed optimism since the fall in crude oil prices.

As a result of the failing prices in oil, their lowest since 2008 when the financial crisis hit, airlines have revealed that they are expecting larger profit margins this year.

As well as falling oil costs, the airline travel industry has never been so busy, with demand increasing across the globe, and as such profitability is set to be positive in the forthcoming 12 months.

However, as the airlines see an uplift in their bank balances, there is no indication that staffing levels will be increased.

The news, this month, comes from lata’s quarterly survey of financial chiefs of the airline industry.

Massive Multi Million Pound Newcastle Investment

Newcastle Airport is investing a whopping £14 million to make it the UK’s most welcoming airport.

The airport, to improve and enhance the passenger experience, is completely redeveloping its departure lounge, with new and updated services to its facilities.

The works will be completed by August, ready for the airport’s peak summer travel period.

Passengers, who will be able to pass through the airport with a real sense of organic flow, passing along curved walkways, will enjoy a huge range of new shops, restaurants, bars and cafes when they fly, many of which proudly reflect the spirit of the North.

Speaking about the investment and redevelopment to Airport Business magazine, the airport’s Commercial Director, Gill Caleary, said, “We really wanted to make sure that we disrupted the actual customer journey as little as possible. There is a huge amount of work going on, and we’ve done a great job of disguising it with well designed, informative hoardings that guide the customer to where they need to go, but we absolutely didn’t think for one second that we would ever close anything. It’s been a logistical challenge but the customer feedback’s been really positive, and we’re doing everything we can to minimise any disturbances along the way.”

Flight Punctuality Falling Across UK

10 of the largest UK airports has suffered from falling punctuality.

In the third quarter of 2014 flight punctuality fell by 5% to 75% across monitored airports in July to September, according to the latest figures from the Civil Aviation Authority.

However, some airports’ punctuality fell far more than the averaged 5%…

… Take Luton, which fell to 12%, along with Gatwick falling to 11% and Stansted falling to 9%.

The average delay was 14 minutes for scheduled flights, an increase of 2 minutes compared to the same time in 2013.
The average delay for charter flights was 18 minutes, again, 2 minutes more than in 2013.

Speaking about the results, Group Director for Regulatory Policy at the CAA, Iain Osborne, said, “Passengers should be able to rely on arriving at their destination in good time, and flight punctuality has steadily improved in recent years.?The figures for the last two quarters are disappointing and it is now for the industry to do all they can to improve punctuality performance.???Notwithstanding this, we are aware of several mitigating factors which have recently affected flight punctuality including airline strikes in France and Germany and several periods of poor and foggy weather.”? ?

Manchester Airport Named Best In UK

Manchester Airport has reason to celebrate this week as it was named Best UK airport!

The title was declared at the Globe Travel Awards earlier this month.

This is the second accolade Manchester Airport has received in as many months, having been voted UK Airport of the Year at the Airport Operators’ Association annual awards in November last year.

The news comes after Manchester Airport, the UK’s third largest airport, behind Gatwick and Heathrow, has had a record 2014, as new airlines, destinations and record passenger numbers have all added to Manchester’s success.

Speaking about the award, Chief Commercial Officer for Manchester Airports Group (MAG), Ken O’Toole, said, “We are absolutely delighted to beat off fierce competition to win such an esteemed award and thank all the travel agents who voted for Manchester Airport.”

Manchester Sees Second Daily Airbus Flight by Emirates

From the 1st February, Emirates will replace its Boeing 777 aircraft between Manchester and Dubai with an Airbus A380.

This second Airbus daily flight means that half of the Emirates 16 daily flights to the UK will be operated on the superjumbo aircraft.

The new aircraft increases capacity at Manchester on this route by 13%, with over 20% on premium cabins.
This is exceptional news for Manchester, who as the UK’s third busiest airport, is attracting more and more passengers with its ever growing portfolio of destinations and carriers.
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Speaking about the introduction of the Airbus, Laurie Berryman, Emirates Vice President, UK, said, “Manchester is the third busiest airport in the UK and demand for flights to Dubai, and beyond, has increased significantly during our 25 years of operating out of the airport. At Emirates we are committed to providing our customers with the very best service possible. The introduction of a second daily A380 aircraft will not only help more leisure and business passengers to travel in and out of Manchester, but also offer them the world-class travel experience that is synonymous with Emirates.” ??

Whilst Ken O’Toole, Chief Commercial Officer at Manchester Airports Group (MAG), added, “We welcome Emirates’ addition of a second daily A380 service at Manchester Airport from 1st February. ??“Manchester is the only UK airport outside of London that the A380, the world’s largest passenger aircraft, flies to. Customers will now have the choice of two daily A380 and one Boeing 777 flights, to travel direct from Manchester to Dubai.”

Charity Partner Named at Belfast Airport as NI Transport Association

George Best Belfast City Airport has announced its charity of the year for 2015.

The successful charity is the Northern Ireland Transplant Association.

This is great news for the charity as the highly coveted charity by the airline, especially given that there are currently 200 people in Northern Ireland on the transplant waiting list.

The position as Belfast Airport charity of the year should increase the charity’s profile, through numerous fund raising events and publicity. The charity is desperate for people to sign up to the donor transplant register – just 33% of people in the local community are on the register.

Speaking about the announcement, Chairwoman for the Northern Ireland Transplant Association, Erica Ferguson, said, ?“This is an amazing opportunity for a small local charity like ourselves to be included in the charity efforts of a large organisation such as George Best Belfast City Airport. The partnership will be instrumental in boosting our presence with the public whilst also stressing the importance of signing onto the organ donor register and informing loved ones in advance. Each donor can save up to seven lives which is incredible!”

Whilst Stephen Patton, Human Resources Manager at George Best Belfast City Airport, added, ? ?“One of our key missions at Belfast City Airport is to support the local community by assisting charitable projects to carry out their vital work and help those in need. Organ donation is an ongoing issue in Northern Ireland and so many need to travel to the mainland to undergo a transplant each year, so working at the airport, our staff see just how many people are affected. ?All members of the Northern Ireland Transplant Association are voluntary workers, and both the Transplant Association and the Airport share the same community values which makes the charity a perfect choice for our partnership this year.”