easyJet books big Edinburgh expansion

easyJet has announced it would be investing
further in its Edinburgh operation and bringing more low fares to Scotland by
introducing three new direct European routes from Edinburgh Airport and increasing
frequency to Amsterdam next spring.  The daily services to Milan and Madrid and twice weekly Palma flight will bring the
number of destinations served by easyJet from its Edinburgh base to 12 and
represents a capacity increase of 10%. The airline expects to carry close to 200,000
passengers on these routes in the first 12 months of operation.

This announcement comes just weeks after the low-cost airline unveiled plans to
operate a daily service to Munich, which will commence on 4 April.  The introduction
of these new routes is a result of the airline’s commitment to the Scottish market
and the additional investment in a fourth aircraft at the Edinburgh base.


At a press conference at Edinburgh Airport today, David Osborne, easyJet’s UK
General Manager, commented:



“2006 has been has been a great year for easyJet in Scotland, we saw significant
growth at our base in Glasgow and we are now welcoming 2007 with huge expansion at
our Edinburgh base.


We expect the new routes to Madrid, Milan, Munich and Palma to attract not only
outbound leisure passengers and boost incoming tourism to the region, but will also
help Scotland develop its business links with these key European business centres.

easyJet is committed to Edinburgh and Scotland as a whole and we look forward to
launching these routes in the spring.” 


The daily Edinburgh - Madrid service that commences on 25 February and the daily
Milan service that commences on 21 May are a result of investment from the Scottish
Executive, in the form of the route development fund. This is a scheme introduced to
support new direct air links, which will bring economic benefits to Scotland.
easyJet will also benefit from funding, in the form of marketing support, from
VisitScotland, to help promote Scotland as a destination in Spain and Italy. 


Madrid, Milan and Munich are attractive city break destinations, and are also
expected to be popular with business passengers providing a vital link between
Scotland and the two cities.  Whilst the Palma flight will offer families the chance
to take advantage of easyJet’s famously low fares for a little summer sun. 


Edinburgh Airport Managing Director, Richard Jeffrey, said:


“We are delighted to welcome easyJet’s announcement of three new services to Madrid,
Milan and Palma which, on top of its recent announcement of a new route to Munich,
further underlines the airline’s commitment to its operation at Edinburgh.


“We are confident that these new services will prove extremely popular amongst our
passengers, whether they are travelling on business or leisure.  It’s also great
news for further encouraging inbound tourism to Scotland.


“The route to Madrid will be our first scheduled service to the city, which is known
for its culture and vibrancy, and we believe will be important in further
strengthening trade links with the Spanish capital.


“We look forward to working with e asyJet to ensure all these new services mirror
the success of its existing routes at Edinburgh”


Not only will these routes provide Scots with new opportunities to travel, they will
also bring Italian, Spanish and German tourists to the city.

Earlier this year easyJet also significantly expanded its operation from its Glasgow
base launching four new direct European routes and basing an additional aircraft at
the airport.  In July 2006 the low-cost airline also converted its fleet at both its
Glasgow and Edinburgh bases into solely Airbus operations with brand new 319
aircraft, demonstrating further commitment to its Scottish bases.