Airlines continue winter flight cuts

By LIZ GRIFFITHS liz.griffiths@algarveresident.com

Several airlines have cut back on their flights to and from Faro this winter in reaction to a drop in the number of British tourists visiting the Algarve this year.

According to ANA (Airports of Portugal), from January to May this year passenger traffic at Faro airport fell by 11.3 percent.

As a result, airline schedules for the winter period have been altered accordingly. 

Along with Thomson Airways (see Algarve Resident, July 10), BMI Baby has restricted the number of airports they will be departing from in Britain.

From October 31 to March 27 2010, the airline will not be departing from Birmingham, flights from East Midlands airport are cut from the schedule in November, and in December and January flights to Faro only depart on a Thursday.

Aer Lingus is continuing to offer their scheduled flights from London Gatwick to Faro throughout the winter but departures from Dublin are restricted.

From December 14 until March 27 2010, flights are only departing from Dublin on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays.

Flying High

On a more positive note, some airlines will be continuing their current departures throughout the winter period.

easyJet will still be departing from Bristol, East Midlands, Glasgow, Liverpool, London Gatwick, Luton and Stansted.

They are even expanding their routes across Europe, including a launch tomorrow (Saturday) from Faro to Paris, Lisbon to Rome and Porto to London Gatwick.

easyJet press officer Miguel Lambertini told the Algarve Resident: “Regarding easyJet’s operations in Faro, the company is growing its capacity in 2009 by about 16 per cent compared to 2008.

“The company expects to maintain this growing tendency for the winter 2009.”

Monarch is also continuing to depart from Birmingham, London Gatwick and Manchester throughout the winter season, the same number of airport departures they are offering during the summer season. 

British Airways will also continue to offer a wide choice of airports throughout the winter period, with flights from Manchester, Edinburgh and London Gatwick, Luton and Stansted.

It has been a successful year so far for Ryanair. The airline’s figures have grown by 98 per cent due to more frequent flights and new pathways that they offer to British tourists.

In the past five months, they have carried 197,000 passengers to the Algarve.

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