Thomas Cook Airlines has announced a partnership with Flybe, opening up long-haul routes to regional airports across the UK via the Manchester hub.
Following the partnership, Flybe’s flights from Aberdeen, Belfast, Edinburgh, Exeter, Glasgow, Inverness, Isle of Man, Norwich and Southampton to Manchester will be able to connect with Thomas Cook’s Manchester routes to the Caribbean, Florida, Las Vegas, Mexico and Goa. The northern airport will be developed into a hub for Thomas Cook to reduce the airport travelling times for holidaymakers.
Christoph Debus, Thomas Cook Group head of air travel, said, ‘As we develop Manchester Airport as our UK hub – working in partnership with Flybe – we’re pleased to be able to offer more flexibility and choice for our customers, competing with the very best scheduled and charter carriers with a range of connections ensuring they don’t have to rely on London’s airports.’
For winter holidays, Flybe flights will connect with Thomas Cook’s Manchester to Cancun flights on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturdays on selected dates. A new Manchester-Antigua-Barbados Thomas Cook Airlines flight will operate from Thursday, December 19. A Manchester-Goa flight will depart every Wednesday.
Connections will be available to Florida’s Sanford airport on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday, and Las Vegas on Wednesday, with early morning Flybe connecting flights. Starting April 2, 2014, a new Las Vegas flight will be operational on Fridays.
In addition, by next summer Flybe flights will also link to the Tuesday, Thursday and Friday Manchester-Cancun flights, and a new Manchester-St Lucia-Barbados route will be introduced every Thursday. From March 29, 2014, Thomas Cook Airlines will launch flights to Orlando International, with same-day Flybe connections available on Tuesday, Thursdays and Saturdays and with an additional departure on Wednesday from next summer.
Ken O’Toole, chief commercial officer at Manchester Airport’s owner, MAG, said: ‘Manchester will be the only airport outside of London to host Caribbean flights this winter and Flybe will be able to provide passengers access to those flights from across their extensive network in the UK and Ireland. It’s another step forward in our drive to bring more passengers to Manchester and will support new and existing long haul routes from Thomas Cook.’