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Press Releases

Press Releases

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Airport announces new adopted charity

19-12-2014

First time ever football Foundations have entered into charity fundraising partnership 

Newcastle International Airport has given two local charities an extra special Christmas present this year by announcing they will jointly become the airport’s adopted charity for 2015 and 2016.

The new partnership will join together Newcastle United Foundation and SAFC’s Foundation of Light for the first time to raise funds, as they work together to engage both staff and customers at Newcastle International Airport.

David Laws, Chief Executive of Newcastle International Airport, said: “Football is a fantastic passion for people across the North East, and this year we saw two loyal fans on their way to support their team lose their lives in the MH17 disaster. These events, and the wonderful reaction of Sunderland fans, have inspired us in our role at ‘Your Airport’ to try and unite the fans, and what better way to do this than via charity and for children.

“This is a historic moment and marks the first time ever the Foundations have come together in partnership as an adopted charity partner. It is fantastic to celebrate these two organisations working together, just before the Christmas holidays, and indeed the Tyne Wear Derby.

“The airport is the perfect place to reach millions of people as they jet in and out of the region either for business or leisure. Both charities are very worthwhile causes working with children and young people across the region. We’re delighted to be able to help them reach out to the North East public, raising awareness of what they do as well as fundraising within our terminal. 

“Over the past two years we have helped Maggie’s Newcastle to raise thousands of pounds. We’ve loved working with them and look forward to working with both Foundations in 2015 and 2016.”

Councillor Iain Malcolm, Leader of South Tyneside Council and lead of the LA7 shareholders, said: “As Lead of the LA7 Shareholders, I am delighted at this announcement. Newcastle is the international gateway airport for the North East, a role that will be cemented further by the bringing together of the two foundations. These charities do some very important work in disadvantaged communities across the region, and the involvement of the airport will be a real boost across a wide range of projects and initiatives.”

Kate Bradley, Head of Newcastle United Foundation, said: “We are delighted to be chosen by Newcastle Airport as their chosen charity for 2015 and 2016.

“The Airport is the first company to adopt both our Foundation and the Foundation of Light as their charity of the year which means together we can raise much needed funds for children, young people and families across the North East. We look forward to working together over the next two years.”

Lesley Spuhler, Chief Executive of Foundation of Light, said: “The partnership is a fantastic opportunity to showcase what the two Foundations do throughout the North East, using the engaging power of football to make a real difference to people’s lives. It’s a great example of the region coming together to improve the communities that we live and work in, and we are very thankful to Newcastle Airport for choosing us to be their  adopted charity.

“It is this type of support that allows us to continue to deliver our much needed programmes, and we look forward to getting involved in a range of activities throughout 2015 and 2016.”

The Foundations will work together to fundraise regularly in the terminal of Newcastle International Airport and will work together to put forward a programme for staff engagement. Over 3,200 people work onsite at Newcastle Airport and around 4.46 million passengers passed through the doors in 2013.

Each season Newcastle United Foundation raises over £2 million to work with over 50,000 individuals; delivering 24,000 hours in the local community, is active in 200 local schools, seeing record levels of participation on all its sporting, health, education and youth programmes. To find out more about the Newcastle United Foundation and how it works with 50,000 young people and their families across the region each year, please visit www.nufoundation.org.uk.

Foundation of Light is the registered charity of Sunderland AFC, and uses the power of football to involve, educate and inspire thousands of young people and their families through a range of award-winning education, sport, health and employability programmes. Projects are delivered to over 42,000 young people and adults throughout Sunderland, South Tyneside and Durham. Structurally and financially independent of the football club Foundation of Light relies on fundraising for 90% of project costs. To find out more about their work, visit www.foundationoflight.co.uk.  

For more information on Newcastle Airport visit www.newcastleairport.com.

easyJet announces three new routes from Newcastle International Airport

10-12-14

easyJet, Newcastle’s largest airline, has today announced the launch of three new routes from the airport to Split in Croatia, and the Greek islands of Corfu and Rhodes from summer 2015.

The trio of routes went on sale this morning (Wednesday 10 December) at www.easyjet.com, giving holidaymakers and business passengers in the North East even more access to a range of exciting and affordable destinations.

More than 20,000 passengers are expected to fly in and out of Newcastle on the new routes from June to October next year alone.

  • Newcastle to Split, Croatia is a summer service, flying on Tuesdays and Saturdays from 2 June 2015. Fares start from £30.00 one-way*
  • Newcastle to Corfu, Greece is a summer service, flying on Sundays from 7 June 2015. Fares start from £32.99 one-way*
  • Newcastle to Rhodes, Greece is a summer service, flying on Thursdays from 4 June 2015. Fares start from £34.99 one-way*

Ali Gayward, easyJet’s UK Commercial Manager, said:

“We’re absolutely delighted to be adding these three new exciting destinations from Newcastle International to our network.

“Whether our customers want to explore the ancient monuments of Rhodes, experience the rich cultural heritage in Split or soak up the sun on the beautiful beaches of Corfu, we’re confident that our new Croatian and Greek routes will be popular choices.

“With easyJet now flying to 17 great destinations from Newcastle International Airport, our customers have even more variety of beach, city and ski breaks to choose from. We’re fully committed to strengthening links from the North East of England to the rest of Europe.”

Chris Sanders, Aviation Development Director at Newcastle International Airport, said:

“We’re pleased that easyJet will introduce these three new routes to their schedule for summer 2015.

“This further strengthens their offering from Newcastle and I’m sure these sunny destinations will have many North East travellers rushing to book up.

“Croatia is an increasingly popular holiday destination. Split is the second largest city in Croatia and the largest on the Adriatic Coast. This lively city has spectacular views across the harbour and a wealth of cultural sights for holidaymakers, so it makes for a wonderful break.

“The Greek Islands are always very popular so we’re sure passengers will take advantage of the great value deals on offer from easyJet.”

Earlier this year the airline also announced a year-round extension of its flights to Geneva, making it the only direct scheduled service to the popular ski and city destination in the summer months. 

In total, more than 4,100 easyJet flights will take off and land at Newcastle International next summer. 

*Fares are per person, based on two people on the same booking. 

Airport sees thousands fly away to escape the winter weather

09-12-14

Holidaymakers are jetting off in significant numbers to escape the UK’s cold winter weather. As the airport gears up for a busy festive season, thousands of holidaymakers are already dashing off to experience some winter sun.

Popular destinations from Newcastle this winter include the sunny shores of Tenerife and Malta, as well as further afield destinations such as Egypt and Dubai. During the months of December, January and February over 600,000 passengers are expected to pass through the airport.

Chris Sanders, Aviation Development Director at Newcastle International Airport, said: “Cold or damp and dull days are the ideal prompt to be thinking of taking advantage of cheap overseas holidays and flights this winter.

“With four airlines now flying to Tenerife there’s plenty of choice of when to go and how long for. Malta has also taken on a whole new air, appealing to passengers of all ages who can soak up some warmer weather and enjoy the buzz the island offers, with bustling bars and cafes to enjoy as well as a special experience that only Malta can offer.

“Further afield, Egypt is seeing increasing numbers of holidaymakers and now with Sharm el Sheikh and Hurghada operating from Newcastle there’s more choice.

“If you really fancy something different, daily flights to Dubai with Emirates put the Middle East in easy reach of those looking for a long weekend away and great experiences. Dubai is also a great place to stay for a few days before continuing onwards to an idyllic destination in the India Ocean such as the Maldives, Mauritius or the Seychelles.”

Newcastle Airport calls upon Government to ensure devolution is fair to the whole of the UK

Newcastle International Airport has today called upon the Government to ensure that forthcoming legislation protects the rest of the UK, including the North East, from the negative effects of devolving the power to charge a tax on air passengers to the Scottish Parliament. This follows the recommendations of the Smith Commission published today.

David Laws, Chief Executive, said: “We are extremely concerned about these proposals. We have undertaken intensive lobbying, including letters to the Prime Minister, Chancellor and other senior politicians. We have also submitted a full representation to the Smith Commission. This hasn’t been published due to its commercial sensitivity but may be in the future.

“Our submission predicts 1,000 fewer jobs across the North East by 2025, significant impact on passenger numbers, £400M in Gross Value Added (GVA) lost between 2015 and 2025, and additional journey time costs of £265M between 2015 and 2025.

“Our understanding is that our submission was discussed at the highest levels of government and the response from the Chancellor indicated that our concerns would be taken into account. We would be surprised if our modelling is inconsistent with the official modelling undertaken.

“If Scotland were to stop applying a tax on passengers, it would penalise people from the North East that want to fly from their local airport. We are now seeking a signal from the Chancellor in next week’s Autumn Statement that the Government is going to do something to address any future distortions. The Prime Minister said on 19 September that the devolution settlement had to be fair also to the people of the rest of the UK. We now want him to honour this commitment. The only way to achieve this is for any reductions in Scotland to be matched in the rest of the UK, or for this damaging Duty to be reformed in such a way that distortions are avoided.”

An open letter to the leaders of the three main political parties

25-11-14

Dear Party Leaders

English airports make valuable contributions to the regions we serve, providing vital connectivity for local economies, supporting jobs, driving inward investment and promoting inbound tourism.  We operate in an international market, competing for aircraft to serve routes with other airports across Europe. Air Passenger Duty (APD) puts us at a significant disadvantage versus non-UK airports.

Continued calls for devolution of APD to both Scotland and Wales risk distorting the UK-wide level playing field on which we currently operate, jeopardising up to £1.2 billion in GVA and over 2,500 jobs in the North East and South West of England alone over the next decade according to economic impact assessments carried out by air transport consultants, York Aviation.

In his comments from Downing Street on the morning after the Scottish Referendum, the Prime Minister stated his wish to see a balanced settlement “fair to people in Scotland and importantly to everyone in England, Wales and Northern Ireland as well”.  Our research shows that if APD were devolved, this balanced settlement would not be achieved.

Advocates for devolving APD point to the economic benefits it could deliver, but neglect to mention that these would come largely at the expense of neighbouring regions in England.  The combination of an intensely competitive airport sector and the porous land borders of the UK would result in a significant redistribution of traffic between airports, but with no net benefit to passengers or UK plc.  The argument that tax competition will lead to reduced APD for all in the long term ignores the damage which would be inflicted on the regional economies of England in the interim.

The devolution of the long-haul rate of APD to Northern Ireland is sometimes cited as a precedent.  However, the Northern Ireland example recognised the unique circumstances in play there, with a shared land border with the Republic of Ireland – where aviation tax was significantly lower than the UK and has now been abolished. That said, short-haul APD still applies to flights from Northern Ireland, and there are still 1.1 million passengers from Northern Ireland flying from Dublin Airport to avoid this.

Such a redistribution of passengers across borders in mainland Britain would result in reduced tax revenues to HM Treasury, with the loss having to be made good from other tax revenue sources.  A substantial reduction in the block grant to the devolved administrations would also be required in order to comply with EU rules – a point recognised by Northern Ireland’s Finance Minister when considering further devolution of APD.

For these reasons, we urge all parties to recognise the potentially damaging impact on airports in England, and the regional economies they serve, by ruling out the devolution of APD to Scotland and Wales. APD is a tax that should be reformed via UK-wide abolition, reduction or via measures to encourage all regional airports to flourish, not by opening up market distortions between constituent parts of the UK.

Yours sincerely

David Laws

Chief Executive Officer

Newcastle International Airport              

Paul Kehoe

Chief Executive Officer

Birmingham Airport

Robert Sinclair 

Chief Executive Officer

Bristol Airport  

Flybe to start operating routes from London Stansted Airport

12-11-14

Flybe, Europe’s largest regional airline, today announced it will start operations at London Stansted Airport with effect from 15th March 2015. This will feature year-round services to the Isle of Man (up to three flights a day) and double daily flights to Newcastle, together with seasonal part week summer flights to Newquay.

Paul Simmons, Flybe’s Chief Commercial Officer, said: "We are pleased to launch three new routes to/ from London Stansted. Bolstering regional connectivity is our number one aim at Flybe and we’re always looking for ways to improve connectivity within the UK. We’re really thrilled to be able to bring a year-round offer to Stansted Airport and look forward to welcoming passengers from the Isle of Man, Newcastle and Newquay who are seeking easy access to Hertfordshire, Essex and London."

Chris Sanders, Aviation Development Director at Newcastle International Airport, said: “We are delighted that Flybe have announced a new twice daily service from Newcastle to London Stansted. This restores an important route for the region and one we know will be very popular with our passengers.

“The importance of good regional connectivity for the North East cannot be understated. Flybe’s new service will lead to significantly easier and quicker journeys to the area around Stansted which includes parts of Norfolk and Hertfordshire as well as all of Suffolk, Essex and Cambridgeshire. There is the added bonus that Stansted is well connected to Greater London by excellent rail and by coach links.

“This is really excellent news from Flybe following their recent re-commencement of daily flights to Exeter and clearly demonstrates their strong commitment to regional connectivity.”

Welcoming today’s announcement, Stansted Airport’s Managing Director, Andrew Harrison said: “Today’s announcement is not only great news for our passengers but is a significant step forward on our ambition to transform Stansted and provide a richer mix of flight connections for the region we serve. When MAG acquired Stansted we set a clear ambition to transform the airport and the arrival of Flybe onto the departure boards for the first time in the airport’s history, and launch of these new direct services to Newcastle, the Isle of Man and Newquay, is another significant milestone in achieving that ambition.

“There is great support from across the business community to see Stansted grow, attract more airlines, offer a broader range of destinations and increased flight frequencies to provide the choice and connectivity that business passengers rely upon to compete and win more business.

“These new services deliver that for the business communities we serve and will also be very popular additions to the route network for leisure connections. We’re looking forward to giving Flybe our full support as they prepare to launch these new connections from Stansted.”

One way fares from £29.99 including taxes and charges are available for booking at www.flybe.com.

easyJet announces year-round flights to Geneva from Newcastle International Airport

06-11-14

easyJet, Newcastle’s largest airline, has today announced that it will operate year-round flights from Newcastle to Geneva. The airline currently offers a winter service which means that passengers in Newcastle can benefit from direct access to Geneva’s world-class skiing resorts, but now the year-round service means they can experience all that Geneva has to offer.

The extension will also mean that easyJet will provide Newcastle’s only direct scheduled service to Geneva during the summer months. More than 17,000 seats will be available on the route at www.easyjet.com from 1 June to 6 September 2015 alone.

Ali Gayward, easyJet’s UK Commercial Manager, commented: “We’re delighted to be extending our Geneva route to a year-round service from today.

“We’ve been flying to Geneva from Newcastle since December 2004, and have seen a huge demand from our passengers wanting to travel there throughout the year as Geneva is an increasingly popular city break destination. As a result of this feedback, skiers, and city breakers alike will now be able to book flights to Geneva 12 months of the year from just £19.99*.” 

The year-round flights will go on sale today, Thursday 6 November, flying up to four times a week on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays from 1 June 2015. Winter ski-flights operate as usual this winter.

Chris Sanders, Aviation Development Director at Newcastle International Airport, said: “We’re delighted to be working with easyJet to launch this new year-round service to Geneva. We’re sure the destination will be popular with both the business and leisure market. Keen hikers and holiday makers will relish the chance to explore Switzerland’s fabulous mountains during the summer. Geneva is a fantastic city break destination but also acts as a gateway to the whole of Switzerland. Travel around Switzerland by train is very easy, especially with a Swiss Rail Pass, so this route will help North East travellers explore new sights and experiences. We also expect to see some inbound traffic seeking to enjoy all the North East has to offer.”

Geneva is renowned for its breathtaking views alongside Lake Geneva, and travellers can take advantage of its cultural offerings, including a wealth of cosmopolitan and traditional restaurants, art shops and old narrow streets with concealed courtyards. It is also one of Europe’s most popular destinations for ski and snowboarders, with several ski resorts just a short drive from the airport.

easyJet now flies to 14 destinations across Europe from Newcastle International Airport, with a wide range of sun, ski and city locations to choose from. Passengers can take advantage of easyJet’s low fares at www.easyjet.com.

*Fares one-way, based on two people travelling on the same booking

Thomas Cook Airlines new route to Hurghada from Newcastle International Airport begins

03-11-14

Following the arrival earlier this year of two brand new Thomas Cook Airlines Airbus A321 aircraft at Newcastle International Airport, and a successful summer season that saw the airlines’ schedule include daily flying to Dalaman, customers can now enjoy wintersun in Hurghada, Egypt, courtesy of the new Thomas Cook Airlines route that launched today.  

Christoph Debus, CEO Thomas Cook Airlines said, “After a great summer season at Newcastle Airport, which uniquely saw two of our brand new aircraft based together, we’re pleased to see the winter season begin with our new route on one of our new aircraft.

“Newcastle Airport is a fantastic partner for our airline, and it’s great news that holidaymakers from across the North East will be able to travel to this popular winter destination and look ahead to even more routes next summer.”              

Leon McQuaid, Aviation Development Manager at Newcastle Airport, said, “It’s great news for the North East that Thomas Cook has now introduced Hurghada into their program, operating the service weekly on one of their brand new state-of-the-art A321s. We believe this service will be especially popular for leisure travellers who want to enjoy guaranteed sunshine and world-class diving in the spectacular Red Sea.

“It’s great to see more choice on offer from Newcastle Airport and for summer 2015 passengers can look forward to even more choice with the introduction of new routes from Thomas Cook to Santorini and Varna.”

This summer, the two Newcastle-based aircraft, in Thomas Cook airline’s new Sunny Heart livery, took hundreds of holidaymakers to destinations across Europe and North Africa.  New Thomas Cook routes from Newcastle for next summer to Santorini and Varna (Bulgaria) have recently been announced and, along with an additional flight to Enfida, flight only offers and holidays are on sale now. 

Thomas Cook Airlines has introduced a total of six new A321 aircraft across its UK fleet this year.  The airline serves 24 destinations from Newcastle International Airport, with over 200,000 passengers each year flying with the airline.

As well as calling into any of Thomas Cook, Co-operative Travel or independent travel stores in the Newcastle area, Thomas Cook Airlines’ flight-only offers are available at www.thomascookairlines.com.  Thomas Cook holidays available at www.thomascook.com, or by calling 0844 412 5970.

Four Calling Birds...Winter Sun in the Canaries with Jet2holidays

30-10-14

With the seasonal chill starting to set in, why not wave winter goodbye and grab some last minute welcome sun in the Canary Islands with Jet2holidays – you’ll be back tanned, refreshed and ready for the party season!

With a wide range of great value packages on offer, now’s a great time to book your escape to the popular hotspots of Gran Canaria and Lanzarote, where average temperatures for the month of December regularly reach 21°C.  And with seven night breaks starting at only £229 per person there’s no better excuse to sneak off for some sun!

To browse and book your perfect package break visit www.Jet2holidays.com or call 0800 408 0778.

Example Jet2holidays packages from Newcastle Airport to the Canary Islands:

Lanzarote: 7 nights, 4 star Iberostar Papagayo, half board, departing from Newcastle on 11th December 2014.

Price: £418 per person, based on 2 adults sharing including transfers and 22kg baggage allowance.

Gran Canaria: 7 nights, 3 star Riosol Hotel, self-catering, departing from Newcastle on 7th December 2014.

Price: £229 per person, based on 2 adults sharing including transfers and 22kg baggage allowance. 

United Airlines to Launch Nonstop Service between Newcastle and New York

27-10-14

United Airlines will introduce nonstop flights between Newcastle and its New York hub, Newark Liberty International Airport, during the period May 23 to Sep. 7, 2015 (both dates westbound), subject to government approval. The frequency of the service will be five times weekly. It will be Newcastle’s first scheduled nonstop trans-Atlantic service.

Flight UA159 will depart Newcastle daily except Wednesday and Thursday at 9:10 a.m., arriving at New York/Newark at 12:00 p.m. the same day. The return flight, UA160, will depart New York/Newark daily except Tuesday and Wednesday at 7:20 p.m., arriving in Newcastle at 7:30 a.m. the following day (all times local). Flight times will be seven hours 50 minutes westbound and seven hours 10 minutes eastbound.

The flights will be operated by Boeing 757-200 aircraft with a total of 169 seats – 16 flat-bed seats in United BusinessFirst and 153 in United Economy, including 45 Economy Plus seats with added legroom and increased personal space.

“We’re very excited about introducing nonstop flights to New York from Newcastle next summer,” said Bob Schumacher, United’s Managing Director Sales – U.K. & Ireland. “We’ll be offering the people of Northeast England easy, convenient travel options not only to New York City but also to destinations throughout the Americas. United already offers trans-Atlantic service from more cities in the U.K. than any other airline and we’ve every reason to be confident that this new service will be a success.”

‘Game-Changing New Route’

David Laws, Chief Executive, Newcastle Airport, said: “For many years, and everywhere I go, people have been stopping me and asking, when is the North East going to get a New York service?

“I have been clear throughout that this is a route that we have been determined to deliver for the region. We have been carefully and quietly working behind the scenes, with our shareholders, to secure what will be another game-changing new route. I am delighted today that we are finally able to make the announcement everyone has been hoping for. United Airlines is the best airline to operate this service. They have an exceptional track record of linking U.K. regions to their New York/Newark hub, where customers can then connect to over one hundred onward destinations.”

Councillor Iain Malcolm, Leader of South Tyneside Council and lead of the LA7 shareholders, commented: “On behalf of the Local Authority shareholders, I am delighted that the collective efforts we have been making have been successful. This new service will be hugely significant, in terms of further enhancing regional connectivity, growing the regional economy, attracting inward investment and encouraging inbound tourism from North America. The Local Authorities and our partner organisations will work hard to make the route a success. We will work with inbound tourism bodies to promote the region to a new audience and we will work with the business community to increase awareness of the connectivity opened up.”

David Rees, Senior AMP representative on the Board of Newcastle Airport, said: “I am delighted, on behalf or AMP Capital, that the airport has secured a service to New York. Newcastle is one of the most successful regional airports in the U.K., and today’s news will cement this position. We look forward to working with the airport and our fellow shareholders to ensure the route is a success and that the airport and the North East reap the benefits for years to come.”

Convenient Connecting Flights

The Newcastle flights have been conveniently timed to connect at New York/Newark with an extensive network of service to destinations throughout the Americas. United operates flights from New York/Newark to more than 300 destinations throughout North, Central and South America and the Caribbean, including more than 100 served nonstop.

United operates the largest hub in the New York City metropolitan area at Newark Liberty International Airport. Located just 25 kilometres from downtown Manhattan, the airport offers the fastest surface transfer journeys to many parts of the city, including the AirTrain service to New York Penn Station in midtown Manhattan, with journey time of less than 30 minutes.

Onboard Products and Services

United BusinessFirst offers a superior business-class service. The BusinessFirst seat reclines 180 degrees into a 6-foot, 4-inch/1.93-m lie-flat bed and features a personal on-demand entertainment system with a 15.4-inch/39-cm touch-screen monitor. BusinessFirst amenities include laptop power, USB ports and a multi-course meal with complimentary wines.

United Economy offers complimentary food, soft drinks, juices, tea, coffee and inflight entertainment. Seats feature an adjustable headrest and a personal on-demand entertainment system.

United Economy Plus offers up to five inches/12.7 cm of extra legroom. Located near the front of the Economy cabin, the seats give the added benefit of allowing a swifter exit from the plane upon arrival.

United operates up to 17 flights per day from London/Heathrow to six of its U.S. hubs: Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, New York/Newark, San Francisco and Washington, D.C./Dulles. In addition, the airline offers nonstop service from Manchester to New York/Newark and (on a seasonal basis) Washington/Dulles, from Edinburgh to New York/Newark and (on a seasonal basis) Chicago, and from Belfast, Birmingham and Glasgow to New York/Newark. United offers nonstop trans-Atlantic service from more U.K. cities than any other airline.

For more information and to book flights visit united.com or call 0845 6076760.

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20 minutes ago: A very special welcome in arrivals this afternoon! pic.twitter.com/stoklOt9me

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