- New direct ski route to Geneva launched today for Winter 2011/12 from £31.99
- 300,000 passengers projected in the first year
- Further investment in the region with 150 local people recruited
- Increased capacity planned for 2012
31 March 2011 - Jet2.com, the leading leisure airline with friendly low fares, made its landmark first flight today from Glasgow Airport. The historic departure of flight LS177 to Alicante at 8am signalled yet further investment into Scotland by the airline, which went on to announce a new direct route from Glasgow to the ski gateway Geneva, Switzerland, future expansion plans and an update on the new local recruits.
The airline's full inaugural flight from Glasgow demonstrated the demand Jet2.com has seen for its leisure flights and package holidays with sister company Jet2holidays, since going on sale in September last year. 148 passengers jetted off to the Costa Blanca on the Jet2Scotland branded aircraft - which was launched for the first flight in the presence of local dignitaries including the Deputy First Minister for Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon. The branded aircraft will provide a great profile for Scotland in Jet2.com's destination airports across Europe and is part of the airline's strategy to encourage inbound passengers to visit Glasgow.
The departure led the way for further good news for local travellers – the launch of a brand new winter route to Geneva, bringing the total number of destinations offered by the airline from Glasgow to a total of eight. The ski route is on sale from today for departures from 23 December 2011 to 15 April 2012, with incredible starting fares from £31.99 one way including taxes.
Jet2.com is already reporting very strong demand with 300,000 passengers expected to travel in the first year. The sunshine destinations of Alicante, Majorca and Faro are proving the most popular with Scottish travellers and, as such, Jet2.com has increased capacity for flights and holidays to Spain and Portugal for the peak summer months of this year.
Since flights went on sale last September Jet2.com has also added winter flights from Glasgow to Alicante and Tenerife – people can book now for holidays through to March 2012. Jet2.com fares from Glasgow start from just £29.99 one way including taxes, and package holidays with Jet2holidays, which include transfers and 22kg baggage allowance, start from £199 per person for seven nights.
Jet2.com received support from Scottish Enterprise – with a Regional Selective Assistance grant and a Training Plus grant – Renfrewshire Council and Glasgow City Marketing Bureau, to help establish its new operation in Glasgow. This has led to the creation of 150 new jobs both direct with the airline and in support companies who provide handling, catering and cleaning services. The great team of local recruits will provide Jet2.com's friendly service to its local passengers. The new staff members that will take to the sky are 35 cabin crew and 22 pilots.
Ian Doubtfire, Managing Director of Jet2.com, said: "This is an exciting day for us, seeing our first flight take off from Glasgow Airport – our second base in Scotland and eighth in the UK. We're thrilled with the positive response to date and, as a result, we have increased our capacity on our most popular sunshine routes. This really highlights there is a need for an airline which gives customers what they want – great value, choice and flexibility.
"The launch of our new ski route to Geneva, in addition to expanding our winter schedule to include flights to Alicante and Tenerife, demonstrates our commitment to providing an unrivalled choice of holiday destinations throughout the year, with the added benefit of our friendly service.
"We see Glasgow, and Scotland as a whole, as having huge growth potential for our leisure flights and look forward to working with the airport to further expand what we can offer the people of Glasgow and the west of Scotland for 2012 and beyond."
Jet2.com will offer Glasgow's only direct service to Nice, in addition to the direct low fare flights to Alicante, Dalaman, Faro, Majorca, Paphos and Tenerife. Jet2.com's sister company, package holiday specialist, Jet2holidays, will also offer great value package holidays to these destinations.
Amanda McMillan, Managing Director of Glasgow Airport, said: "I'm delighted to be able to welcome Jet2.com to our airport and I'm thrilled the airline has selected Glasgow as its eighth UK base. Being able to secure an airline of Jet2.com's calibre is a major coup for us and I'm confident it will prove extremely popular with our customers.
"We continually strive to offer customers greater choice and Jet2.com will play a significant role in further enhancing our already extensive route network. It will also provide a much needed boost for the local economy by helping to create 150 jobs and I'd like to wish Jet2.com every success for the future."
Steve Heapy, Managing Director of Jet2holidays, added: "In the current economic climate people are looking for the best value holidays possible and because we deal directly with our accommodation providers we are confident we can offer Glasgow customers the very best price on their holidays.
"We are thrilled with the bookings to date, which show that the people of Glasgow and surrounding areas are already taking advantage of our great value package deals. Jet2holidays' low deposit deals of £60 per person are proving particularly popular, as is the fact we are ABTA and ATOL protected – giving our customers complete peace of mind when booking."
Initially, one 757 and the Scotland branded 737 aircraft will be based at Glasgow. Both will feature Jet2.com's brand new interiors and ergonomically designed seating which has been specially commissioned to make the in-seat experience more comfortable and accommodating, whilst saving weight and therefore using less fuel. All Jet2.com and Jet2holidays passengers enjoy allocated seating – making boarding the flight a more relaxed start to a trip.
In addition to a great choice of holiday destinations and leading low fares, Jet2.com also offers a generous 22kg baggage allowance, myJet2 loyalty scheme with points for free flights, allocated seating and convenient flight times.
Flights and starting fares from Glasgow Airport:
- Nice – from 1st April 2011 – flights from £29.99 one way including taxes, or a package holiday from £299 per person for 3 nights bed and breakfast on the French Riviera.
- Alicante – from 31st March 2011 – flights from £36.99 one way including taxes, or a package holiday from £229 per person for 7 nights self catering in the popular resort of Benidorm.
- Majorca – from 31st March 2011 – flights from £36.99 one way including taxes or a package holiday from £219 for 7 nights self catering in the family favourite resort of Alcudia.
- Faro – from 1st April 2011 – flights from £36.99 one way including taxes or a package holiday from £199 per person for 7 nights self catering in the golf lovers resort of Vilamoura.
- Tenerife – from 1st April 2011 – flights from £49.99 one way including taxes or a package holiday from £329 per person for 7 nights half board in lively Playa de las Americas.
- Paphos – from 3rd April 2011 – flights from £59.99 one way including taxes or a package holiday from £299 per person for 7 nights self catering in the historical resort of Paphos.
- Dalaman – from 7th May 2011 – flights from £69.99 one way including taxes, or a package holiday from £329 per person for 7 nights all inclusive in the much loved resort of Marmaris.
And our new ski route:
- Geneva – from 23rd December 2011 – flights from £31.99 one way including taxes.
For more information about Jet2.com or for bookings, visit www.Jet2.com for flights or www.Jet2holidays.com for package holidays.