Norwegian announces new route from Manchester to Bergen

Scandinavian airline Norwegian has said that it is expanding its network at Manchester Airport with the addition of a new non-stop service to Bergen.

A UNESCO World Heritage City, the Bergen region provides visitors with captivating views of the fjords, as well as its rich history and culture.

The new route will commence on October 28, 2019 for the winter season with two weekly flights on a Monday and Friday. Passengers in Manchester and the North West will now be able to explore the Norwegian city of Bergen this winter with fares from £43.90 one way.

Magnus Maursund, SVP commercial Short Haul at Norwegian, said: ‘Norwegian’s new flight to Bergen from Manchester will allow passengers in the North West to take advantage of our affordable fares all while enjoying our award-winning complimentary Wi-Fi and modern comfortable cabin on new state-of the-art aircraft.’

Julian Carr, Aviation Director at Manchester Airport, said: ‘It’s great to see Norwegian increase its destination choice from Manchester Airport to include Bergen. I am sure this route will prove incredibly popular with the 22 million passengers in our vast catchment area by giving more accessibility to this Scandinavian city.’

Norwegian started operating from Manchester Airport in 2011 with flights on the new 186 seat Boeing 737-800 aircraft, offering all passengers free onboard Wi-Fi and live TV.

Besides the new flight, Norwegian already operates three non-stop routes to Scandinavia from Manchester Airport with three weekly flights to Oslo, two weekly flights to Stavanger and two weekly flights to Stockholm. Along with the new route the airline will now offer nine weekly flights to Scandinavia from Manchester, Norwegian said.

bmi regional doubles capacity on its Aberdeen – Oslo service

UK-based airline, bmi regional, has said that it has doubled its capacity on the Aberdeen to Oslo route as the airline seeks to provide better connectivity for the oil and gas industry on both sides of the North Sea.

The airline’s scheduled service was launched in October last year as a single daily flight, Sunday to Friday. Effective from February 3, bmi regional will operate two flights a day, Monday to Thursday, with single daily flights continuing on Sundays and Fridays.

The addition of morning and evening flights four days a week will enable business travellers to spend a day in either city and will also increase inbound leisure traffic to the North-east of Scotland, the airport said.

Cathal O’Connell, chief executive of bmi regional, said: ‘When we launched our Aberdeen to Oslo service last year we committed to increasing the frequency if demand required it and we are now delivering on that promise.

The support of businesses at both ends of the route has exceeded our expectations and we are now responding to feedback from our customers by delivering additional frequency. Increasing the number of flights to two a day demonstrates our commitment to providing connections that support the strong economy in the North-east of Scotland, the oil and gas industry, and businesses in Scotland and Norway.’

The Scandinavian oil and gas industry is a key market for bmi regional, as it launched a direct service from Aberdeen to Kristiansund in August 2013, and started flights between Stavanger and Harstad/Narvik (Evenes) and Tromso in the north of Norway, Kristiansund and Gothenburg in Sweden, in January.

Claimed to be the UK’s most punctual airline for the past eight years, bmi regional operates 300 flights a week to 21 destinations across the UK and Europe.

bmi expands Scandinavian connections

bmi regional, the UK-based airline, is looking to expand its services in the Scandinavian market with the launch of scheduled services from Stavanger to Kristiansund and Gothenburg.

The new services will start from January 23, 2014 with Stavanger – Gothenburg operating a daily service Sunday to Friday, and Stavanger – Kristiansund operating daily Monday to Friday. The two routes are to complement bmi regional’s established services from Aberdeen to Oslo and Kristiansund and the new routes announced from Stavanger to Harstad-Narvik Airport (Evenes) and Tromso starting January 23, 2014.

Cathal O’Connell, chief executive of bmi regional, said: ‘The additional connectivity that we are providing out of Stavanger will further enhance our offering to the people, communities and businesses that we serve in Norway and Sweden. We anticipate that the new routes will attract both business and leisure traffic and support socio-economic development in the region.’

Airport Director, Stavanger, Leif Lorentzen, said: ‘Improved connectivity between Stavanger and Kristiansund has been on the regions wish list three years in a row – we know that the increased schedule will be welcome by the Stavanger and Kristiansund business community.

Ole Kristian Pettersen, Airport Director, Kristiansund Airport, said: ‘Increased connectivity for the oil and gas industries in Stavanger and Kristiansund has been on the agenda for several years. The introduction of bmi regional on this route will give both the business and leisure markets in both regions new and improved opportunities. We look forward to welcoming bmi regional with a second route from Kristiansund in less than 6 months.’

bmi regional has recently made other major route announcements in Norway, with Aberdeen to Kristiansund launched in August and Stavanger to Harstad-Narvik Airport (Evenes) and Tromso as well as Aberdeen to Oslo launched in October. The airline will commence a Newcastle – Brussels service in March next year.

bmi regional operates an 18-strong, all jet fleet serving 21 destinations in eight countries. It was named Silver Airline of the Year at the annual European Regions Airline Association (ERAA) awards in October.

2014 UK itinerary from Celebrity Cruises

Celebrity Cruises, a cruise ship company with its headquarters in Miami, Florida, has today released details of its UK-based itinerary for 2014.

Bookings for the cruise company’s new schedule can be made from the 21st of this month, and include new itineraries for Spain, the Canary Islands and the Norwegian Fjords.

Celebrity has two ships that are UK-based, the Celebrity Eclipse that operates out of Southampton, and the Celebrity Infinity that operates out of Harwich. Included in Infinity’s itinerary are the European Immersive Wine Cruises for vineyard devotees, 14-night trips to Iceland and the Norwegian Fjords, and 11- and 14-night tours of the British Isles, which include stopovers in Wales and Ireland.

The itinerary for Celebrity Eclipse includes a new tour of Spain and the Canary Islands, which is for 10 nights.

Associate vice president and general manager of Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises and Azamara Club Cruises – UK and Ireland, Jo Rzymowska, said, ‘It is always an exciting time when we announce our new sailings and the new destinations and experiences that our guests can enjoy. The 2014 summer season sees the UK playing host to two of the six Celebrity Cruises ships based in Europe plus new additions to the sailings, including more overnight stays, allowing guests to experience the local nightlife and explore the regions more fully. Our 2014 UK departures set the bar high when it comes to offering a modern luxury holiday without the hassle of flying and we are pleased to continue to offer our guests new and exciting destinations.’

Norwegian Air Shuttle Announces New Base at London Gatwick Airport

Norwegian Air Shuttle, a Norway-based airline company, will be establishing a new base at the London Gatwick airport in the UK.

The airline is planning to base three of its aircraft at Gatwick airport, and will be offering 14 new routes from the airport to European destinations including Nice, Marseille, Rome, Barcelona, Faro, Split and Dubrovnik. The base will be operational in 2013.

The airline is also planning to expand its existing services from London Gatwick to Oslo from three flights to four flights per day, and to Stockholm from three flights to five daily services.

Stewart Wingate, the chief executive officer for Gatwick Airport, said, ‘We are delighted that Norwegian has chosen to grow its operations out of Gatwick by establishing its UK base here. Since Norwegian moved its Scandinavian routes from Stansted to Gatwick a few years ago we have worked hard to make that move a success. Their decision to establish their UK base at Gatwick demonstrates the strength of Gatwick’s offering to airlines.’

The airline chief executive officer, Bjorn Kjos, said, ‘By establishing a new base in London, Norwegian will be positioned to meet the future competition on short-haul routes within Europe as well as long-haul routes globally. Growth and volumes are necessary to stay competitive in the airline industry.’

London Gatwick airport is currently focused on its plan to become a world-class airport that offers an excellent passenger experience. The airport authorities have invested £650 million in new facilities that include car parks, check in desks, security areas, departure lounges, as well as business travel facilities.

Norwegian Cruise Line to Own Norwegian Sky

NCL Corporation Limited, or Norwegian Cruise Line, a US-based cruise company, will be acquiring Norwegian Sky, a cruise ship already operated by the company.

The company operates Norwegian Sky under a Bareboat Charter with Ample Avenue, a subsidiary of Genting Hong Kong Limited. It will be paying a purchase price of around £168 million for the 50 percent ownership of the cruise ship, currently owned by Ample Avenue.

The cruise ship, with a capacity of 2,004 passengers, is currently offering 10 dining options, 11 bars and lounges, an onboard spa and a casino for guests. For entertainment onboard, the guests have a choice of theatrical productions, a fitness centre, a sports court, pools and hot tubs, and children’s entertainment.

The cruise ship offers flexible accommodation, ranging from affordable berths to opulent Suites. The ship also has wireless Internet access in all public areas, 24 hours a day.

Norwegian Sky is currently offering three and four-day cruises, year round, to the Bahamas from Miami. The three-day Bahama cruise prices commence at £110 per person.

Norwegian Sky, a 13-year old cruise ship, is part of the company’s fleet of 11 ships.

The company has two 4,000-passenger vessels, Norwegian Breakaway and Norwegian Getaway, on order for delivery in April 2013 and April 2014.

It is currently offering a Seven-Day sale for its UK customers, with savings of up to £400 per stateroom on every category of accommodation, for the 2012-2013 cruises, on all bookings made by June 12, 2012, with the travel completed by April 2013.