VLM Airlines carried 374,873 passengers across its scheduled network in the first six months of 2007, an increase of 16 per cent compared to the same period in 2006. The increase follows significant growth on a number of the carrier’s routes including London City - Amsterdam, where the airline flew 80,600 passengers - an increase of 123 per cent. The London City - Antwerp route increased by 10 per cent to 47,000 passengers, and the London City - Luxembourg route by 12 per cent to 30,500.
Since last year three new routes have been added to the network: London City - Groningen via Amsterdam, Antwerp - Manchester and Rotterdam - Manchester.
Other product developments have included Fast Lane access for the airline’s Business Class passengers departing from Brussels Airport, the introduction of the airline’s first jet, a BAe 146-300, to its fleet in April 2007, and the rapid growth of its frequent flyer programme VLM Encore which now has over 30,000 members.
As a full service regional business airline, VLM Airlines has carved a niche for itself with a well-defined product that is popular with business travellers, which represent over 80% of its customers. Since it launched services in 1993 with direct flights between Antwerp and London City, the airline has played a significant role in the growth of services to and from London City Airport, where it is now the largest carrier with over one third of all movements at this centrally-located London airport.