In a significant boost to flight access to London from Ireland’s Western region, Ireland West Airport Knock is pleased to announce that the UK’s third largest travel provider, XL.com, today announced that XL Airways will operate new scheduled flight services from London Gatwick to Ireland West Airport Knock. Gatwick will be XL Airways first scheduled service in Ireland and the UK. This route, which will commence on 14th December 2007 comes as welcome news to the many thousands of customers who travelled on Ireland West Knock’s previous Gatwick services, operated by other airlines, which were suspended in September /October last year.
The six-days-a-week flight will commence on 14th December next and introductory fares start from just €19 one way (including taxes & charges*), growing to a full daily service from summer 2008 onwards. It will be flown using new generation Boeing 737-800 aircraft carrying 189 seats providing a capacity boost of up to 138,000 annual passengers for Ireland West Knock.
Bill Smith, Managing Director, XL Airways Ireland, comments: “I am delighted to be announcing the Ireland West Knock to London Gatwick service as the first of XL.com’s- scheduled routes. XL.com is a very significant player in the UK market and we are a growing operator in the Irish market. We operate from 12 UK airports serving some 50 international destinations in Europe, North Africa and the Americas. This new route is part of our pledge to expand our flight services in Ireland including our expansion from Ireland’s fourth international airport at Ireland West Knock. We look forward to continue to work with the team at Ireland West Knock and we hope that the general and business public in the West and North West will avail of the service and support XL.com in making the route a success."
Welcoming the announcement, Robert Grealis, Chief Executive of Ireland West Airport Knock said: “We received an avalanche of requests to re-introduce services to Gatwick when our double daily flights were suspended last year. While it was a significant blow to the Airport and the region, we simply re-doubled our efforts to attract other airlines to fill the gap. The Airport team has worked very hard to win back this route and we are delighted that XL.com will re-introduce this much-in-demand route. It comes as very welcome news not only for our Airport and people in Ireland and London, but for business and tourism interests in the West and North West of Ireland. We truly hope that the public, business interests and travel sector in the west of Ireland will support XL.com in its endeavours to make the route a success for all concerned.”
The re-introduction of Ireland West Knock - London Gatwick services will boost flight connectivity to and from London to three-times-daily providing almost 1,200 seats per day and increase the outbound and inbound connections between Ireland West Knock to London airports to 410 worldwide destinations. Around 90 airlines operate from Gatwick`s two terminals, serving over 200 destinations. London Gatwick (www.gatwickairport.com) is the busiest single runway airport in the world, the second largest airport in the UK and the seventh busiest international airport in the world. Owned by BAA, London Gatwick serves 32 million passengers annually with its future development strategy focusing on expanding as a single-runway, two-terminal airport, as it grows to handle around 40 million passengers a year by 2010/2011. Gatwick provides easy access to London Central and South London areas as well as to the southern counties of West and South Sussex. There are bus and rail links from Gatwick including the Gatwick Express www.gatwickexpress.com which takes passengers into Central London within 30 minutes. Gatwick serves a catchment of 12 million and also provides easy access to South Britain tourism attractions such as the vibrant City of Brighton and many other seaside resorts on the South Coast.
Ireland West Knock – London Gatwick flight times between Monday and Thursdays depart from Gatwick at 08.30am arriving into Ireland West Knock at 10.05am. Flights depart Ireland West Knock at 10.55am, arriving into Gatwick at 12.30pm. On Fridays, flights depart Gatwick at 16.45pm arriving into Ireland West Knock at 18.20pm with the return flight from Ireland West Knock departing at 19.00pm arriving into Gatwick at 20.35pm. Flights on Sunday depart Gatwick at 13.35pm arriving into Ireland West Knock at 15.10pm, with flights departing Ireland West Knock at 16.10pm arriving into Gatwick at 17.45pm. To book seats between London Gatwick and Ireland West Airport Knock visit www.ie.xl.com, www.xl.com, phone XL.com on 0818 220 220 or through your local travel agent. Flights will go on sale on 27th September and you can book seats right now right up to October 2008 already!
* Excluding Ireland West Airport Knock’s departing passenger Development Fee of €10.