Wizz Air launches direct flights from London to Moscow and St. Petersburg

European low-cost airline Wizz Air has said that its British subsidiary airline Wizz Air UK has commenced scheduled direct flights from London Luton to the Russian cities of Moscow and St. Petersburg.

The St. Petersburg route is the first direct flight operated by a British airline from the UK to the Russian destination, and the route to Moscow is the first ever low-cost flight connecting the two capital cities.

Tickets for Wizz Air UK flights can be booked on wizzair.com at a price from EUR29.99 / £25.99, one way, including all taxes.

The new flights from UK to Russia were launched on October 1, 2019 and will be operated daily. The first Wizz Air flight from Luton to Vnukovo Moscow Airport will depart at 15:20 (17:20 Moscow time) with arrival at 21:00 Moscow time, and to Petersburg Pulkovo at 22:40 (00:40 Moscow time Wednesday) with arrival at 04:05 Moscow time. The flights will be operated on 180-seater Airbus A320 and 230-seater Airbus A321 planes, respectively.

Jonathan Pollard, Chief Commercial Officer, London Luton Airport, said: ‘We’re really excited to be launching these two fabulous destinations, making Russia the 44th country to be connected with London Luton Airport. I’m very confident that they will prove a big success with our passengers and we remain grateful to Wizz Air for continuing to widen their choice of destinations available here at the airport.’

Owain Jones, Managing Director of Wizz Air UK said: ‘We are thrilled to offer our UK passengers the opportunity to experience Russia’s major cities. Those looking to immerse themselves in the rich history and culture of Moscow and St. Petersburg need look no further, as our direct, low-fare flights make these cities more accessible than ever. Wizz Air is delighted to continually offer our customers more opportunities to discover new and exciting destinations across Europe and further afield and look forward to welcoming passengers travelling to Russia on-board our young, green and ultra-efficient Airbus aircraft fleet.’

Wizz Air now offers 107 low fare routes to 30 countries from eleven UK airports; and 63 routes from its base at London Luton Airport.

Virgin Atlantic to offer London Heathrow – Sao Paulo service from March 2020, announce codeshare with GOL to serve 37 destinations

The UK- based Virgin Atlantic and Brazilian domestic carrier GOL have announced a new codeshare agreement allowing customers to connect from Virgin Atlantic’s brand new London Heathrow – Sao Paulo service onto flights across Brazil.

GOL will offer connections to 37 destinations across the country, including Brasilia, Rio de Janeiro and Recife. Virgin Atlantic and GOL are also planning to expand their codeshare further with the addition of flights to Argentina, Chile and Uruguay, in addition to a reciprocal frequent flyer programme expected soon.

Flights from London Heathrow to Sao Paulo and onward, went on sale on September 10, 2019. Available for travel year-round from March 29, 2020, Virgin Atlantic will fly daily from London Heathrow to Sao Paulo on a Boeing 787-9. The flight will depart London Heathrow at 22:30, arriving Sao Paulo at 06:25; and on return, the flight will depart Sao Paulo at 16:25, arriving London Heathrow at 07:50 hours.

Juha Jarvinen, Chief Commercial Officer at Virgin Atlantic, commented, ‘We’re delighted to announce our codeshare agreement with GOL. Brazil is such a rich and diverse country and we’ll be able to offer seamless connections for customers from our brand new London Heathrow to Sao Paulo service onto 37 destinations across Brazil. With flights on sale from Tuesday 10th September 2019 and the first flight on 29 March 2020, customers will soon be able to enjoy Virgin Atlantic’s signature service to South America’s largest country.’

Eduardo Bernardes Neto, SVP Sales & Distribution at GOL, commented, ‘We’re delighted to partner with Virgin Atlantic ahead of its arrival into Brazil next year. GOL offers a leading route network and high quality service and we’re thrilled to be able to connect even more customers thanks to our new partnership with Virgin Atlantic.’

Virgin Atlantic’s codeshare will offer travellers a range of destinations – the popular leisure favourites include surfer hotspot Florianopolis, the Amazon jungle via Manaus and the beautiful coastline of Recife. For business travellers, connections include the Brazilian capital Brasilia, Rio de Janeiro and industrial hub Curitiba. Both airlines offer Wi-Fi and inflight entertainment across their fleet.

Norwegian launches Autumn sale at London Gatwick to Europe, the US and South American destinations

Norwegian has launched its Autumn sale at London Gatwick, offering travellers savings on over 35,000 flights to Europe, the US and South America.

Customers looking to book their next holiday or city break will be able to obtain discounted nonstop fares from London Gatwick to 16 destinations including Alicante, Barcelona, Madrid, Malaga, Gran Canaria, Tenerife, Rovaniemi, Boston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Orlando, San Francisco, Tampa, Buenos Aires and Rio de Janeiro.

Matthew Wood, SVP Commercial at Norwegian said: ‘We are once again giving consumers the opportunity to travel even more affordably across the globe in our Autumn sale. These fantastic offers will allow holidaymakers and business travelers to take advantage of our low fares while enjoying exceptional levels of quality and service on board modern aircraft that reduce our impact on the environment’.

Available for travel from November 1, 2019 to March 31, 2020, holidaymakers can now book a flight to the US from £134.90 one-way, fly to South America from £199.90 or head to Europe from £28.90. All sale prices are on the Low Fare ticket type, and include a 10kg hand baggage allowance, which includes one cabin bag and a small personal item as well as free onboard Wi-Fi. Seats are available to book now at www.norwegian.com/uk/offers/big-sale/, with the fares on offer until 22.59 BST on September 16, 2019.

The flights to Europe will be operated on the modern 186 seat Boeing 737-800 aircraft while passengers travelling out to the US or South America will fly on a 787 Dreamliner aircraft.

One of Europe’s low-cost airlines, Norwegian carries more than 5.8 million UK passengers each year to over 50 global destinations.

Radisson RED to launch in London in 2020

Radisson Hotel Group has announced the signing of the Radisson RED London Greenwich in the UK.

Opening in 2020, the move will bring the Radisson Group’s upscale, lifestyle hotel brand to the English capital, alongside the other UK landmark Radisson RED hotels in Glasgow and Liverpool. The new signing is part of a £8bn project to redevelop Greenwich Peninsula and transform it into a must-visit destination.

Greenwich is a thriving tourist spot and is home to the world’s busiest concert and events venue, the O2 Arena. Located within walking distance, guests will find it easy to get to the O2 Arena from the hotel. The Radisson RED London Greenwich will also put guests within reach of some of London’s famous sights including the famous Prime Meridian, the Cutty Sark, several museums, and the cable car offering views over the Thames, Canary Wharf and the city.

Elie Younes, Executive Vice President & Chief Development Officer, Radisson Hotel Group, said: ‘Radisson RED is for those who wish to stand out of the crowd and it now lands in London. Opening in 2020, it perfectly blends business and play around the O2. A sincere appreciation goes to our partners for their trust in our people and our brands.’

Vivek Chadha, Owner of Nine Hotel Group, said: ‘We’re thrilled to have signed the agreement to bring a Radisson RED hotel to this side of London. Being so close to the multi-purpose O2 arena is hugely exciting, as I believe it’s the number one indoor music arena in the world and hosts the best global talent. Our hotel will be a representation of the culture and talent the arena attracts.’

Vijay Thakkar, Co-owner of the hotel, said: ‘We’re excited to ink the deal with Radisson Hotel Group to bring a Radisson RED property to London. The hotel shall attract both business and leisure travelers, and I am eagerly looking forward to its grand opening.’

With 70 rooms, the hotel will offer a bistro, bar, and a gym. Guests have plenty of travel options to reach the hotel and explore London, including major road links, multiple bus routes and a London Underground station not far from the property. London City Airport is five miles from the hotel.

Guests and professional business partners can enhance their experience with Radisson RED by participating in Radisson Rewards, a global loyalty programme offering benefits and rewards.

United Airlines adds year-round service between Heathrow and Denver

United Airlines has said that it will offer year-round service between Denver International Airport and London Heathrow, beginning November 1, 2019.

United began summer seasonal service to London Heathrow in March 2018. While the Denver-London route has grown significantly – nearly 60 per cent since 2017, today around 700 people travel between the two cities in a day. London ranks as Denver’s largest long-haul market, and second-largest international market -next to Cancun, Mexico.

‘We are delighted that United has seen such success with nonstop service to London-Heathrow and will offer the flights year-round beginning this winter,’ said DEN CEO Kim Day. ‘The increased capacity is the reflection of both strong local demand as well as the growth of connection opportunities through United’s hub in Denver.’

United will operate the Denver-London Heathrow flight six days per week November through March and daily during the rest of the year on the 219-seat Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner aircraft. United’s additional long-haul service from Denver includes year-round, nonstop service to Frankfurt, Germany and Tokyo-Narita, Japan.

With this announcement, Denver Airport now has year-round, nonstop service to London on two airlines, United and British Airways. United’s new service will increase Denver’s nonstop winter capacity to Europe by six percent and increase nonstop winter flight departures to an average of 36 per week.

Ryanair announces new routes from Bucharest and Vilnius to London Southend

Ryanair, the Irish low fares airline, has announced two new routes to Bucharest and Vilnius from London Southend, commencing in November 2019.

The new route to Bucharest will operate with a five times weekly service, while the new Vilnius route will operate three times weekly. Following the announcement, Ryanair has launched a seat sale with fares from £9.99 for travel until the end of November 2019, which must be booked by midnight Saturday, August 24, only on the Ryanair.com website.

Ryanair’s David O’Brien said: ‘Ryanair is pleased to continue its Central and Eastern European expansion with the launch of two new Southend routes to Bucharest and Vilnius, commencing in November, as part of our extended winter 2019 schedule.’

‘Customers in Southend can now book flights to Lithuania and Romania as far out as March 2020, enjoying even lower fares and Ryanair’s great choice of destinations, with 39 countries in the Ryanair network, following our entry to the Geogian market earlier this week.’

‘To celebrate, we are releasing seats on sale from just £9.99 for travel until the end of November 2019, which must be booked by midnight Saturday (24 Aug). Since these amazing low fares will be snapped up quickly, customers should log onto www.ryanair.com and avoid missing out.’ Ryanair said that it will continue its Central and Eastern European expansion with the launch of these new routes to Romania and Lithuania. The announcement follows the airlines’ entry to the Georgian market.

Etihad Airways announces fourth year-round daily service to London Heathrow

Etihad Airways has said that it will expand its services from Abu Dhabi to London Heathrow by adding a fourth year-round daily service between the two capitals, launching on October 27, 2019.

The new service adds a mid-morning departure from Abu Dhabi and a late evening departure from London Heathrow. The move follows the introduction of additional seasonal services this summer.

Robin Kamark, Commercial Officer, Etihad Aviation Group Chief, said: ‘The flagship Abu Dhabi to London route is tremendously popular with point-to-point business and leisure travellers, and those transiting beyond our hub and we recently boosted frequencies between the two cities to meet increased demand at peak travel times. Adding a fourth year-round flight will provide much needed capacity and optimised timings and easy connections to key destinations across the Middle East, Africa, Asia and Australia.

‘The new service demonstrates our commitment to the crucially important UK market, and ensures we provide our customers with all the benefits of a next-generation fleet across all 42 weekly departures to and from the United Kingdom.’

Etihad Airways said that it will introduce a next-generation, two-class Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner on one of its four daily London services. The aircraft is configured with 299 seats – 28 Business Studios and 271 Economy Smart Seats. The new service complements the three other services which are operated by Etihad’s 486-seat Airbus A380s, which feature The Residence, a luxurious three-room cabin, nine private First Apartments, 70 Business Studios and 405 Economy Smart Seats. These include 80 Economy Space seats with a seat pitch of up to 36 inches.

In addition to the four daily flights to London Heathrow, Etihad Airways also operates two daily Boeing 787 Dreamliner services between Abu Dhabi and Manchester.

Flyone announces new flights from Chisinau to London Southend

Flyone has announced the launch of a new route from Chisinau to London Southend, starting July 19, 2019.

The flights will be operated twice a week on Tuesdays and Fridays. Fares will start from EUR49.00. This new route will be operated by an Airbus A319 aircraft.

The flight will depart Chisinau at 20:45, arriving at London Southend at 21:50 hours. On return, the flight will depart London Southend at 22:40 arriving Chisinau at 03:40 hours. Tickets can be booked at www.flyone.md, as well as in authorised agencies, both on the territory of the Republic of Moldova and abroad.

‘Flyone has launched direct flights to London as a result of our customers’ request for an affordable alternative to visit friends and families. Moreover, we provide a schedule which allows our passengers who want to get rid of their routine to plan mini holidays. In this regard, we appreciate our collaboration with London Southend Airport which gives us the possibility to offer our customers a safe, comfortable and affordable flight alternative,’ said Mircea MALECA, General Director of Flyone.

Separately, Flyone said that starting October 14 a new baggage policy will be introduced for simplifying the allowance system and providing greater convenience to customers. From October 14, 2019 each passenger will be entitled to travel with one free hand baggage of up to 40x30x20cm. Passengers who purchased Flyone Priority service will be allowed to board with a second larger bag up to 10 kg and 50x40x25cm. In addition, Flyone also introduces new types of checked baggage – a small bag up to 10 kg (EUR15); a standard bag up to 20 kg (EUR 20) and a big bag up to 30 kg (EUR 30).

Flyone currently operates direct flights to 11 destinations, 7 regular routes and 4 charter routes: London, Moscow, Parma, Verona, Dublin, Lisbon, Paris, Antalya, Heraklion, Sharm El Sheikh, and Bodrum.

CheapOair.com reveals popular European destinations this summer, London top

CheapOair.com, a US-focused online travel agency and provider of discount flights, has announced the most popular European destinations for summer travel in 2019.

Based on the travel trends and booking data, CheapOair revealed that London is the highest booked destination for the fourth straight year with an average roundtrip airfare of $783, a 10 per cent price decrease from 2018. London was also named the best-rated destination in the world by the 2019 TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choice awards for destinations, up from second place in 2018.

Based on its price- comparison and booking analysis, CheapOair also found that Greece is emerging as a popular destination among tourists and travellers. Athens continues to be a summer hot spot, with the price decreasing by four percent compared to 2018, making it a highly attractive destination this year.

‘Flying to Europe is becoming more affordable every year, which means it’s also becoming increasingly popular,’ said Tom Spagnola, Senior Vice President of Supplier Relations at CheapOair. ‘Consumers should take advantage of these low costs to experience European cities they haven’t been to before, but booking early is important as summer is the most popular travel season and costs will only increase from here.’

With its data on travel trends, CheapOair helps consumers and travel professionals in both planning their travel accommodations and staying current on the most popular destinations.

According to the data revealed by CheapOair, the average price to fly to European destinations has decreased by three percent this summer. With several major carriers introducing basic economy fares for trans-Atlantic flights, consumers are taking advantage of many affordable travel options to popular European cities, including Paris, Rome, Barcelona, and Madrid, it said.

British Airways launches ‘Flying with confidence’ course from London City Airport

British Airways has launched its first ever ‘Flying with Confidence’ course at London City Airport, as part of its centenary celebrations coming up in August.

The course, which has run for three decades, has helped more than 50,000 people overcome their fear of flying. It is run by British Airways Captain Steve Allright and a specialist team who will explain the technical side of flying, challenging regular areas of concern such as turbulence. The centenary celebrations include initiatives that are designed to look ahead to the next 100 years of aviation. There will also be advice from a clinical psychologist on relaxation techniques and managing anxiety, and the day will finish with a flight on a modern Embraer 170 jet.

Captain Allright believes the course will help more people than ever take to the skies in the future. ‘We love flying and want everyone to share that feeling of limitless opportunity and adventure that only air travel can really deliver. British Airways is the largest airline at London City Airport so we want to give nervous customers the chance to spread their wings and enjoy exploring all the new destinations we have to offer, most recently Split in Croatia,’ he said.

‘We’ve had so many incredibly heart-warming stories during the 33 years of the course, but what they all have in common is that we’re helping to connect people, and that definitely makes it all worthwhile,’ Allright added.

The one-day ‘Flying with Confidence’ course will start with presentations by British Airways pilots and a psychologist, at the Radisson Blu Edwardian Hotel, New Providence Wharf. It will conclude with a 45-minute flight on a British Airways aircraft with participants guided by the airline’s flight crew and supported by experienced cabin crew.