Changing Islay Planes

Loganair this week announced the end of its franchise arrangement with British Airways. The airline has agreed a deal with the low-cost carrier Flybe which will commence on 26th October. Tickets for travel after this date will be on sale through www.flybe.com from June. Flybe, which services Scotland?s four major airports, is Europe?s largest regional airline, carrying over 7 million passengers in 2007. Loganair will also have in place a Codeshare Agreement with British Airways, allowing passengers to travel on BA flight numbers when connecting with British Airways flights through Aberdeen, Glasgow and Edinburgh. Loganair?s chairman Scott Grier said: 'This is an exciting time for everyone at Loganair and a significant step for the company. The move to become a franchise partner with Flybe provides a certain future for the company. 'The air service networks of both airlines are complementary and this deal will give our customers a greater choice of UK and European connections.' Flybe?s chairman and chief executive, Jim French said: 'This landmark agreement, the first time a low cost carrier has entered into such a franchise arrangement, is an exciting development in the evolution of the low cost model and one which Flybe sees as a valid strategic option for the future.' Continue Reading....The Air Discount Scheme, which gives residents of Islay a 40% discount on the price of core fares, remains unaffected by this announcement. Loganair carried more than 500,000 passengers last year. VisitScotland area director Iain Close said: 'The improved access to Argyll and the isles that comes with FlyBE?s extensive European routes is exciting news, particularly as those routes so extensively cover the UK and also the important French market, where there are already two direct routes into Glasgow from Paris and La Rochelle. 'As we continue to work with tourism businesses to grow the industry by 50% by 2015, this news will be welcomed by businesses across Scotland as a significant opportunity to increase our position in key markets, especially those where Argyll?s dramatic landscapes, whisky distilleries and wildlife are amongst our most powerful draws for visitors.' Inglis Lyon, managing director of HIAL said: 'Loganair is an important strategic partner for us and has worked closely with us on developing the region?s air network in recent years. 'This announcement means that Loganair will now be able to offer a host of new interlining opportunities via Flybe?s UK and European network while retaining existing interlining arrangements with BA via Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Glasgow. 'This is really a win win situation for the region and heralds an exciting new phase in Loganair?s history,' said Mr Lyon.

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This story was published with kind permission of the Ileach local newspaper.

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