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News of July 2009

Ryanair to put scheduled routes on ice over winter

24 July 2009

Ryanair is to cut 670 flights a week, close ten routes and reduce frequency on a further 30 routes in the biggest winter shake-up for the airline so far.

The low-cost carrier refused to specify which routes would be affected. It will move some operations from its largest base, at Stansted, Essex, to Spain, which is abolishing airport landing fees this winter to try to keep tourist numbers up. Greece has also eliminated landing fees and airports around Europe are understood to be arranging discounts with airlines to keep services operating.

source: Times Online

easyJet backs campaign to twin Liverpool with Malaga

24 July 2009

A high-profile campaign has been launched in a bid to see Liverpool twinned with the Spanish holiday resort of Malaga.

And after ten years of flying between the two destinations, easyJet is spearheading the calls for Liverpool to become the first UK city to officially twin with the gem of Andalusia.

Like Liverpool, Malaga is a busy port which has re-invented itself over recent years to become a busy, cosmopolitan city with an exciting and multi faceted cultural scene – not to mention attracting thousands of tourists (or guiris as they say in Malaga) each year.


Italy grounds low cost airline MyAir

23 July 2009

Italy’s civil aviation authority grounded low cost airline MyAir on Wednesday, saying months of financial troubles made the company’s service unreliable.

The Italian authority, know by the acronym ENAC, said it suspended MyAir’s license to fly effective at midnight Friday.

The airline based in Vicenza, northern Italy, flew from Italian cities to airports across Europe, as well as Morocco and Turkey.

source: MSNBC

Ryanair to improve clarity over ‘hidden charges’

17 July 2009

The no-frills airline, renowned for its “hidden charges”, was referred to the OFT following a number of complaints to the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA).

Ryanair has promised to give greater prominence to information regarding “optional” charges, such as those for checking in luggage, and will provide clearer information on its promotions and low price guarantee.

We welcome Ryanair’s action which we believe will make it easier for consumers to access the information they need when choosing low cost flights,” said Mike Haley, the OFT’s director of consumer markets.


Recession puts a dent in British tourism

17 July 2009

The global economic crisis took a heavy toll on travel to and from Britain last year, figures released on Thursday showed, while the first quarter of 2009 was also gloomy for the tourism industry.

Visits to Britain fell to 31.9 million, down 2.7 percent from 2007 and the first fall since 2001, when the 9/11 attacks and a foot-and-mouth outbreak dented global travel, a report by the Office for National Statistics showed.

Visits by Britons abroad also dropped in 2008, marking the first decline in two-way travel — both from Britain and to it — since the Gulf War in 1991.

In the first quarter of this year, visits by British residents abroad fell by 21 percent year-on-year, following a 9 percent fall in the last quarter of 2008.

source: Reuters

Passenger traffic drops at Europe’s top airline

8 July 2009

Air France-KLM, Europe’s biggest airline, which has already been forced to cut operations in the economic crisis, saw passenger traffic fall 6.4 percent in June, the company said.

The biggest drop came in Asia, where passenger numbers fell 10.8 percent, while traffic in Africa and the Middle East dropped just 0.2 percent. The European network saw a 6.8-percent decline in traffic.

Air France-KLM said it carried a total of 6.4 million passengers in June.

source: AFP