Cunard launches ‘Summer at Sea’ luxury UK voyages including special sun voyages

Luxury British cruise line Cunard has said that it is offering UK guests the opportunity to spend this summer at sea, with a series of UK voyages on board Queen Elizabeth.

Voyages will be round-trip from Southampton, between July and October 2021, and comprise of British Isles scenic cruising and special Sun Voyages, sailing to bright summer destinations. Ten British Isles Voyages and three Sun Voyages, which would last from three to 12 nights, are available.

British Isles Voyages include sailings along Britain’s coastline including The Jurassic Coast, England’s only natural UNESCO world heritage site, Cornwall including Land’s End and Scotland including the Isle of Arran, Mull of Kintyre and Sound of Mull. Four voyages will make various port calls, including Liverpool, Greenock, Invergordon, Belfast, and Newcastle, in addition to a maiden call for Cunard’s fleet to the Welsh port of Holyhead.

Cunard president Simon Palethorpe said: ‘Cunard’s Summer at Sea luxury UK voyages are a truly unique way for guests to have a much-needed break this summer. With international travel not yet fully opened up we’re delighted to offer these voyages exclusively for British guests to experience a staycation unlike any other, as they relax in Cunard luxury knowing we will take care of everything.

‘Guests can sail along some of the most stunning coastlines anywhere in the world, as Queen Elizabeth provides a unique vantage point, or sail on one of our Sun Voyages where the destination is unscripted and is guided by studying the weather forecast and heading to where the sun shines brightest.’

Four night British Isles Voyages are priced from £599 per person for a Balcony Stateroom, while a ten night British Isles Voyage will start at £1,299 per person for a Balcony Stateroom. Seven night Sun Voyages are priced from £899 per person for a Balcony Stateroom. The cruises go on sale Wednesday March 31, 2021 at 10am, and can be booked at www.cunard.com.

The sailings on Queen Elizabeth will be for UK resident Covid-19 vaccinated guests only. All other voyages on sale currently do not require guests to be vaccinated.

All guests and crew will be required to follow enhanced health and wellbeing measures to protect everyone on board on these cruises. These protocols include enhanced sanitation measures, appropriate social distancing and the wearing of masks in certain areas of the ship. Crew will also undergo a strict testing and quarantine regime as well as regular testing during their time on board, subject to change as rules evolve. Travel insurance will also be mandatory for all guests.

Ryanair expands UK summer 21 schedule, launches 26 new routes

Ryanair has announced the launch of its expanded UK Summer 2021 schedule, which includes over 2,300 weekly flights across 480 routes, including 26 new routes to popular holiday destinations in France, Greece, Italy, Portugal and Spain.

UK holidaymakers are increasingly looking forward to holiday travel following the Government’s roadmap for the re-opening of air travel and the success of the vaccination programme. UK families can now book a Summer holiday until October 2021, flying to international destinations such as Bologna, Fuerteventura, Zakynthos and Valencia among many others.

Ryanair’s UK Summer 21 offers flights to holiday destinations such as Corfu, Santorini, Menorca, Ibiza, Faro and the Canary Islands. Summer breaks to Europe’s top cities including Barcelona, Lisbon, Naples, Rome and Venice.

As part of the announcement, Ryanair has launched a seat sale with fares available from £19.99 for travel until the end of October, but these sale prices must be booked by midnight Sunday, March 28 on the Ryanair.com website.

Ryanair’s Group CEO, Michael O’Leary, said: ‘The UK Govt has implemented a very successful vaccine rollout programme, and is on track for a re-opening of EU short-haul travel this summer. Ryanair is pleased to offer even more choice and lower fares to our UK customers and their families with over 2,300 weekly flights and 480 routes to choose from, including 26 exciting new holiday connections to Naples, Rhodes, Chania, Alicante and Mallorca among many others.

‘UK families can now book a well-earned summer holiday safe in the knowledge that if their plans change for any reason they can move their travel dates up to two times with a zero-change fee up until the end of October 2021.’

Jet2.com bookings to Turkey double as tourism reopens

Jet2.com and Jet2holidays, the UK-based leisure airline and holiday company, has said that it has registered an increase in customers booking flights and holidays as countries open up for travel after the Covid-19 lockdown.

Jet2.com and Jet2holidays has reported a 1,000 percent increase in bookings immediately following the UK Prime Minister’s announcement of an exit roadmap from lockdown, and customer demand is continuing. Since the exit plan, a number of countries across Europe and the Mediterranean, including Greece, Spain, Cyprus and Portugal, have announced that UK holidaymakers will be able to travel to these countries in summer.

According to Jet2, bookings to Turkey doubled after the Turkish Tourism Minister said that holidaymakers from the UK will be welcome this summer. In response to this demand, Jet2.com and Jet2holidays has put over 100 additional flights on sale to Turkey.

Extra capacity has been added to Antalya, Bodrum and Dalaman with additional flights operating from late-June to late-October, with a focus on the late-Summer season.

Steve Heapy, CEO of Jet2.com and Jet2holidays said: ‘Turkey has continued to be a popular choice, and the welcome news that UK holidaymakers can enjoy the Turkish sunshine this summer has translated into an immediate rush of bookings. We already have fantastic choice on sale to Turkey from across our network of UK bases, and these additional flights and holidays come in direct response to the demand that we have been seeing. Once again, customers are telling us that they want to get away, and once again we are quick to respond to that – giving customers and independent travel agents even more choice when it comes to getting away on a real package holiday.’

‘We know our customers want to get away and we know that our destinations are keen to welcome them. The UK government has shown that there is a clear ambition to reopen international travel in the coming months and we look forward to more detail in due course. This week marks one year since international travel was first shut down because of the pandemic, and there are sunnier skies ahead. As soon as travel reopens, we will be ready to take our customers on their well-deserved holidays.’

Jet2holidays registers increase in bookings to Greece and Cyprus

Jet2holidays, the UK tour operator, along with leisure airline company Jet2.com, has said that there has been an immediate rise in bookings to Greece and Cyprus following reports that holidaymakers will be able to travel to both destinations this summer.

Following the UK Prime Minister’s announcement of an exit roadmap from lockdown, data from Jet2.com and Jet2holidays showed that bookings to Cyprus increased by another 200 percent. The increase also came after Deputy Minister of Tourism for Cyprus said that UK nationals who have been vaccinated will be able to travel to Cyprus this summer.

Jet2.com and Jet2holidays will fly to 14 destinations in Greece this summer, after registering strong demand to popular Greek islands such as Corfu, Crete, Kefalonia, Rhodes and Zante as well as Santorini, Skiathos and Halkidiki. The companies recently added more flights and holidays to Zante, Crete (Heraklion), Rhodes and Kefalonia, extending the Summer 2021 season and providing customers with more choice.

In addition, the companies operate flights and holidays to Larnaca and Paphos in Cyprus, with bookings data showing a significant increase in families booking holidays.

Steve Heapy, CEO of Jet2.com and Jet2holidays said: ‘The UK is the most advanced country in Europe when it comes to successfully rolling out a vaccine, so we applaud the Greek and Cypriot governments for their forward-thinking decisions. This, on the back of the recent announcement by the UK government, gives customers great confidence that they can get away to enjoy the sunshine this summer and the numbers show that this confidence is increasing all the time.’

‘We are very pleased that the government has shown a clear ambition to reopen international travel in the coming months, and we look forward to more detail in due course. Throughout the pandemic, we have done absolutely everything to look after our valued customers and we have always said that the sun will shine for them once again. We know what an incredibly difficult time it has been for everyone, and we very much look forward to taking everyone from our rainy islands to their dream holiday choice this summer and beyond.’

The UK government had announced that travel will not return until May 17 at the earliest, so Jet2.com and Jet2holidays have suspended flights and holidays up to and including May 16, it said.

Loganair announces direct service between Newcastle and Jersey

Glasgow-based Loganair has announced a new direct service between Newcastle and Jersey as an addition to its 2021 summer schedule.

The new service adds to Loganair’s summer 2021 destinations from Newcastle, which already includes Aberdeen, Bergen, Exeter, Newquay, Southampton and Stavanger.

Commencing on May 28, the new route will operate twice per week on Fridays and Sundays until July 6 – increasing to three times weekly until October 26 with the addition of a Tuesday service. The route will be operated using a 49-seat Embraer 145 regional jet with fares starting at £75.99 one-way. Tickets are on sale effective immediately.

Kay Ryan, Loganair’s chief commercial officer, said: ‘We are very excited by the potential of this new route, and believe it will prove extremely popular as it is increasingly likely that British holidaymakers’ options will be unfortunately limited this year.

‘The route will ensure customers in the North East have access to one of the most beautiful and popular holiday destinations in the British Isles, one which provides more than a hint of being overseas with its French place names and climate.

‘This addition to next summer’s schedule shows Loganair’s continued commitment to providing domestic connectivity for both leisure and business customers, despite the severe damage being caused to the aviation industry by the Covid-19 pandemic.’

Leon McQuaid, Newcastle International Airport’s Head of Aviation Development, said: ‘It’s fantastic to see Loganair continue to invest at Newcastle International Airport and to be welcoming yet another destination in addition to routes to Aberdeen, Southampton, Exeter, Stavanger and Bergen.

‘Jersey is a popular destination for the North East travelling public, providing an island getaway a little closer to home. This new service will give greater flexibility for passengers wishing to travel to Jersey whether that be for a holiday, business or to visit family and friends.’

Matt Thomas, CEO for Ports of Jersey, said: ‘We are delighted to announce another step forward in our partnership with Loganair, with the launch of this service to Newcastle. Despite these challenging times, the demand for Jersey as a holiday destination remains strong among visitors, whilst it also enables residents the opportunity of visiting much missed family and friends in the UK.

‘We are working hard to ensure that when the day comes that travel restrictions are lifted, Jersey will be well-placed to reap the benefits that connectivity brings to our tourism and hospitality sector.’

Cornwall Airport Newquay announces Summer 2021 services

Cornwall Airport Newquay is preparing to welcome passengers back to the Airport announcing connections around the UK, Europe and beyond, for Summer 2021.

While Cornwall Airport currently remains closed, the teams at the Airport and Cornwall Council have been working with the Department for Transport to ensure a safe reopening once lockdown restrictions are lifted. The new four-year London PSO (public service obligation) route is expected to be announced in the coming weeks and will commence operations on March 28 2021. The teams are working to ensure the London route serves both Cornish residents travelling to London for business and leisure and inbound tourists to the Cornish coastline.

When the Airport reopens, Ryanair will resume its popular routes to Alicante and Faro in March. Cornwall Airport is also expecting the return of the Aer Lingus route to Dublin, as well as the Eastern Airways’ routes to Manchester, Teesside and Leeds-Bradford.

In addition, Cornwall’s newest airline partner Loganair is expected to commence operations in March. The Scottish airline will be reconnecting Cornwall to Edinburgh, Glasgow, Newcastle and Aberdeen as well as operating routes to Manchester and Teesside alongside the current Eastern Airways services.

Later in the summer, Blue Islands will return to the Airport to operate routes to Jersey and Guernsey, providing a link for holidaymakers wishing to visit the Channel Islands or Cornwall.

Further, the Airport is expected to resume its European connections to Dusseldorf (with Eurowings) and Copenhagen (with SAS) this summer. The route to the Isles of Scilly with operator Skybus will now have a codeshare agreement with Loganair, making Scilly more accessible than ever before for customers.

The summer 2021 schedule at Cornwall Airport Newquay will be expanded to include more popular destinations as new announcements are expected throughout the coming months, the Airport said.

Jet2 announces additional routes and flights from four UK bases for Summer 2022

With most people in need of a break away once the Coronavirus pandemic subsides, Jet2 has added thousands of seats to a range of popular hotspots from four of its UK bases – Birmingham, Bristol, Manchester and London Stansted).

Jet2 has also added a range of sun and city break destinations for next summer, including brand new destinations from the newest base Bristol Airport, as well as from Birmingham Airport. With the latest announcement, Jet2 has put another 26 routes from across the four bases on sale for Summer 2022.

Steve Heapy, CEO of Jet2.com and Jet2holidays, said: ‘Since we announced the launch of our Summer 22 programme, the response from customers and independent travel agents has been absolutely magnificent. Our reputation for looking after customers and delivering real package holidays has really cut through, and we have been very encouraged by the number of bookings coming through. Customers clearly want their all-important holidays to look forward to, so we have responded quickly by adding more destinations, as well as additional flying to a range of popular hotspots across Europe, the Canary Islands and the Mediterranean.’

The new routes include: two brand new destinations from Bristol Airport in summer 2022: Malaga (Costa Del Sol) and Larnaca (Cyprus). With this, Jet2.com and Jet2holidays has a total of six new summer destinations on sale for Summer 2022 from Bristol Airport including Paphos, Alicante, Bodrum and Dubrovnik. From Birmingham Airport, Jet2 has added nine new destinations including the brand new Paris and La Rochelle, as well as Amsterdam, Barcelona, Budapest, Rome, Krakow, Prague and Venice. Jet2 will now have 52 sun and city destinations on sale from Birmingham Airport for Summer 2022, including the recently-launched Lisbon route.

At Manchester Airport, the company has introduced 10 additional destinations going including Iceland and Vienna as summer destinations, as well as the reintroduction of Tivat (Montenegro). A further seven additional city destinations have been introduced including Barcelona, Budapest, Rome, Krakow, Nice, Prague and Venice – offering 56 sun and city destinations from Manchester Airport for Summer 2022, including the recently-launched Lisbon route. From London Stansted Airport, Jet2 has reintroduced five destinations including Tivat (Montenegro), Girona (Costa Brava), Costa de Almeria, Nice and Malta, offering 43 destinations to choose from for Summer 2022.

In addition to the new routes on sale, Jet2 has announced additional flights from Birmingham, Bristol, Manchester and London Stansted Airports, adding thousands of seats. The company has added flights to 19 destinations from Bristol Airport including to Tenerife, Lanzarote, Gran Canaria, Alicante, Reus, Palma (Majorca), Menorca, Faro, Antalya, Bodrum, Dalaman, Corfu, Crete (Heraklion), Halkidiki, Kos, Rhodes, Skiathos, Zante and Paphos.

Loganair announces Summer 2021 schedule from Isle of Man

Loganair, one of the UK’s largest regional operators, has announced its Summer 2021 schedule from the Isle of Man – adding three new routes, increasing services on existing routes and restoring routes suspended during the pandemic.

Loganair has maintained the Isle of Man’s only passenger air services throughout the Covid-19 pandemic and is now looking to allow customers to plan and book ahead for summer travel, as Covid-19 vaccines are expected to enable air travel widely once again.

The new routes from the Isle of Man include to Southampton, with three fights a week from May 26 – conveniently scheduled for onward connections to the Channel Islands with Loganair’s partner airline Blue Islands, and for those meeting cruise sailings; to Belfast City with services offered four times a week from April 1 increasing to six times weekly from May 24; and a seasonal non-stop service between the Isle of Man and Jersey, flying every Saturday from May 22 until late September.

Loganair chief executive Jonathan Hinkles said: ‘We are heartened to be able to further increase the island’s connectivity with these announcements. We’re already seeing bookings coming in for destinations such as Jersey and Cornwall, and it was increasingly clear that the Isle of Man was missing out. Today’s announcements will provide clarity for both our customers on the Isle of Man and those on the ‘other island’ and beyond wishing to plan and book for the summer.’

‘We’ve taken a phased approach to increasing the number of flights on offer, in anticipation of a progressive recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic and re-opening of borders. Of course, we will continue to work closely with the airport management team and the Isle of Man Government to prioritise public health and continued connectivity.’

Loganair said that it is also planning to increase the numbers of seats available across all routes by introducing larger ATR72 turboprop aircraft, which can carry up to 70 people per flight.

easyJet to relaunch new routes from Bristol to Greece for summer 2021

easyJet has said that it will launch two new routes to Greece from Bristol next summer.

The UK-based airline had announced last year that it was adding flights to Preveza in Greece and to the Greek island of Kos to its Bristol network for the first time. The launch was postponed as a result of the covid-19 pandemic, and the routes will now launch: to Kos on March 29, 2021, and to Preveza on May 2, 2021, with fares available at easyJet.com from £26.99.

Ali Gayward, easyJet’s UK Country Manager said: ‘In anticipation that demand for travel will return – and having recently seen signs of growing confidence by our customers in making plans for travel next spring and summer – we are delighted to confirm the launch of these new routes from Bristol next summer, providing even more choice for customers to book a trip to look forward to.

‘Returning customer momentum is supported by the welcome news of the vaccination roll out, which will enable normal life to resume; including travelling again for work, to visit friends and family, or for a much-needed holiday.

‘We are proud to be the largest airline at Bristol and remain committed to providing great value services to our customers by offering low fares, and more choice when they travel.’

Dave Lees, CEO, Bristol Airport said: ‘We are delighted with easyJet’s exciting news introducing new routes to Preveza and Kos in Greece for summer 2021 from Bristol Airport. This decision extends the route network available to customers in the region and provides even greater opportunities for customers to fly from their local airport, reducing the need to travel to other airports outside of the region. The introduction of the test to release scheme when customers return to England possibly reducing the quarantine period, and the roll-out of the COVID-19 vaccination programme gives customers extra confidence to return to international travel. We will continue to work with easyJet, enhancing and developing the route network for the future.’

Flights to the two new destinations will operate twice a week throughout the summer, offering travellers a more direct connection to some popular Greek resorts, joining existing easyJet routes from Bristol to Athens, Corfu, Crete, Kefalonia, Rhodes and Zakynthos.

easyJet holidays offers seven nights at the 4* Kipriotis Aqualand Hotel in Kos, Greece on an all-inclusive basis for £364 per person based on two adults and one child, including flights from Bristol airport, transfers and 23kg of luggage per person on May 3, 2021. Customers can book with easyJet holidays at easyjet.com/en/holidays.

British Airways launches summer 2021 schedule at Southampton, adds 11 new European routes

British Airways has announced the launch of an exciting summer schedule directly connecting England’s south coast with holiday destinations in Spain, Italy, Portugal, Greece, France and Germany.

As part of a new agreement with Southampton Airport, the airline will operate up to 17 flights each weekend to 11 locations between May 1 and October 31, 2021.

BA CityFlyer will fly from Southampton to Malaga, Florence, Faro, Mykonos, Ibiza, Palma de Mallorca, Bergerac Dordogne Perigord, Limoges-Bellegarde, Nice Cote d’Azur, Edinburgh and Berlin. The additional services will be operated using BA CityFlyer’s existing fleet of Embraer 190 aircraft. Customers can book via ba.com/southampton.

Tom Stoddart, Managing Director of BA CityFlyer, which will operate the new services, said: ‘We are delighted to announce the extension of our services to Southampton Airport next summer.

‘This is an exciting opportunity for the British Airways family. The ideal location of the airport and excellent facilities on offer will hugely benefit our customers along the South Coast as they plan to take to the skies again and book a well-deserved holiday in the sun.’

Steve Szalay, Operations Director at Southampton Airport, said: ‘Today’s announcement from British Airways is fantastic news for Southampton Airport and the region during what has been the most challenging of years.

‘It’s also great to see BA return to the airport once again and the range of excellent destinations on offer is sure to be a welcome early Christmas present for passengers looking to plan a European holiday next summer.’