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15 July 2011

Flybe reports 2011 Open Championship driving demand for Manston routes

Leading regional airline says Kent passenger numbers up 70%during top golfing event.

Flybe, Europe’s leading regional airline and the UK’s Number One Domestic carrier is reporting that bookings have soared with strong demand for all of its flights operating to and from Manston Kent International airport as players and golfing fans fly in for The Open Championship 2011 at the nearby Royal St George’s Golf Club.  Total bookings are up 70% compared with the same period in 2010, with those on the airline’s popular Edinburgh service up 40%.

The airline is the only scheduled operator flying into Manston airport and, over the four-day duration of The Open, is offering a choice of 12 convenient flights from both Edinburgh and Belfast City, the latter route in particular attracting a higher-than-average volume of close-in bookings, undoubtedly driven by the many home fans following Northern Ireland’s own Rory McIlroy’s, chasing his second major title following his success at the US Open last month.

Mike Rutter, Flybe’s Chief Commercial Officer says: “As the only scheduled airline operating out of Manston, we are delighted to play our part by bringing in many of the thousands of people who will visit the area over this very important golfing showcase for Kent.”

Flybe also notes that the golfing event appears to be positively impacting many of its 250 flights operating over the extended days of play to and from London Gatwick, including those from Newquay, and is also happy to see connections being made via Edinburgh and on to Kirkwall and Sumburgh, routes operated by its franchise partner, Loganair.
 
Adds Mr Rutter: “As the UK’s Number One Domestic carrier, Flybe is committed to contributing to the local economies in the regions in which we operate. The Open Championship has seen some of the world’s top golfers fly down with us from Edinburgh earlier in the week after playing in the Scottish Open and now golfing fans from all over the country are following to enjoy an extended visit to Kent.”

Flybe operates up to 20 flights a week to Manston airport from Edinburgh and Belfast City with seats from £30.99 one way including taxes and charges available for booking at www.flybe.com