Staff at Aberdeen International Airport (AIA) have been on the hunt for new business at Europe’s largest route development networking event. The AIA Route Development Manager Lynn Harwood and Managing Director Carol Benzie have travelled to Krakow in Poland for the Routes Europe 2016 Event, hoping to persuade a few of the 100 airline representatives to launch new North- East flights. Routes Europe 2016, which started on Sunday 15th, brings together airlines, airports and tourism authorities, as well as more than 1,000 aviation professionals from around the world.
Travelling with findings from their survey carried out in conjunction with Aberdeen and Grampian Chamber of Commerce, showing where people would like to fly to from the Granite City, the two arrived in the city of Warsaw looking forward to the event. Ms Benzie said: “The results of this data collection has indicated that the top five most requested routes which are currently either not served or underserved from our region include Barcelona, Vilnius, Alicante, Malaga and Faro.“We are sharing all of this information with potential leisure operators, with a view to gaining some traction on increasing our leisure offering from Aberdeen.“In addition, we have meetings with our existing airline partners to talk through all of the positive things happening in the north-east at the moment – investments in the AWPR (Aberdeen Western Peripheral Route), the new exhibition centre, new hotels and our £20million airport redevelopment.”
The aim for AIA is to encourage airlines to add new flying routes from the Dyce terminal. This could be considered perfect timing with the holiday operator Thomson starting up its new summer flights to Gran Canaria. Meanwhile, the first few sun-bound flights to Las Palmas left AIA last week with maximum passenger numbers of 200 on board.
Surprisingly enough, some finding from the destination survey carried out by Ms Benzie and Lynn Harwood actually highlighted that places such as Malta and Vilnius in Lithuania proved to be just a few of the more highly selected places for leisure travel, while interest in Turkey and Tunisia has lowered for obvious reasons.