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New flights as passengers increase

[January 7th 2009]

Low cost airline easyJet is launching nine new flights from the UK as it announces passenger numbers increased in December.

While other airlines experience a fall in passenger numbers, easyJet continues to grow. Its latest figures for December, covering the all-important Christmas and New Year holidays, show that passenger numbers in December 2008 were up 7.3% compared to December 2007.

The budget airline carried more than 3.1 million passengers in December. And occupancy levels on its aircraft were also higher in December 2008 than in December 2007. The figures show that easyJet planes flew 82.3% full in December 2008, compared to 78.9% full in December 2007.

As other airlines went bust or were forced to contract, easyJet had an excellent year in 2008, carrying more than 44.5 million passengers, an increase of no less than 16.6% on the total number carried by the airline in 2007. Occupancy levels were also up in 2008 – 84.6% compared to 83.5% in 2007.

No doubt encouraged by the growing number of people who seem to be taking low cost flights, easyJet will launch nine new routes from UK regional airports in the next few months. As part of its latest expansion the no frills airline says it will also base an additional aircraft at Liverpool airport from 1 June 2009 and at Manchester airport from 4 August 2009.

Liverpool airport will get new flights to Dubrovnik from June 2nd with fares from £26.99, to Naples from June 1st with fares also from £26.99 and to Bordeaux from June 2nd with fares from £22.99.

The new flights from Manchester airport start from May 4th to Corfu with fares from £33.99, to Athens from August 1st with fares from £36.99, and to Bastia from August 9th with fares from £30.99.

Bristol airport will get new flights to Corfu from May 22nd with fares from £26.99 and to Bastia from May 24th with fares from £22.99. Finally, there will be new flights from Newcastle airport to Malta from April 2nd with fares starting at £26.99.

“We are proud to keep growing in Liverpool and Manchester, where we will base additional aircraft that will boost the local economy, create much needed jobs and give even more destinations at our famously low fares,” comments easyJet chief executive, Andy Harrison.

Written by: Nick Purdom