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Published: Thu 02 Mar 2023 at 15:45


In 2003, the first flight to Portugal landed in Faro from Leeds Bradford Airport and two decades later the leading leisure airline has celebrated 20 years of success and growth, during a VIP event in Lisbon hosted by CEO Steve Heapy which was attended by hoteliers and tourism industry partners.

Since 2003, when operated just one route to Portugal (Faro), the company has enjoyed tremendous growth, both through and tour operator Jet2holidays.

Today, the companies operate to Portugal from all ten of their UK bases with 19 routes on sale, and over half a million seats on sale this summer. The scale of this operation means that and Jet2holidays is now the UK’s largest airline to Faro and Madeira based on the number of routes operated between the UK and both bases. In addition, Jet2holidays has almost 400 hotels and villas on sale, as well as a team of almost 150 colleagues employed in the country, including 60 uniformed Jet2holidays customer helpers.

This coming summer represents and Jet2holidays’ biggest ever summer programme to Portugal, with capacity up 4% compared to last summer and up to 92 weekly flights arriving from the UK during peak periods. The companies operate to Faro from all ten of their UK bases and to Madeira from nine UK bases. As well as flights with and package holidays with Jet2holidays, customers can travel on Jet2CityBreaks packages to Funchal City and Faro City.

Celebrating 20 years of growth, CEO Steve Heapy told an assembled audience of hoteliers and industry partners that over four million customers have travelled to Portugal with and Jet2holidays since 2003, contributing billions of euros to the economy.

Mr Heapy also highlighted the company’s track record of winning awards for its VIP customer service, including Which? Travel Brand of the Year and Tripadvisor Best Airline – Europe. He also presented and Jet2holidays’ sustainability strategy which addresses sustainability at every stage of the journey, whether that is in the air, in resort or on the ground.

Speaking at the event at the Altice Arena in Lisbon, Mr Heapy also thanked industry partners for their support and highlighted how working in partnership with them has been integral to and Jet2holidays’ success over the past two decades. He vowed to continue working in partnership with hoteliers and industry partners, and to continue bringing more holidaymakers to Portugal.

Steve Heapy, CEO of and Jet2holidays said: “This year marks 20 years since we started operating to Portugal, when we had just one route on sale. Today we operate an enormous programme with unrivalled frequency to Faro and Madeira from the UK, and we have flown millions of customers to this magnificent country. Such growth would not be possible without the fantastic partnerships we have in Portugal, and I would like to say a heartfelt thank you to hoteliers, airports, tourist boards and all our partners. As we continue to grow and take more customers to Faro and Madeira on our award-winning flights and holidays, we will continue to put that partnership approach at the very heart of everything that we do.”


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