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Photo: Visit Manchester

Ryanair adds Billund, Gothenburg to Manchester

The airline has revealed new routes to the northern English city, in Billund’s case clashing with a carrier already well established on the route.

Ryanair has announced new direct routes between Manchester and both Billund and Gothenburg, commencing in April as part of the carrier’s Manchester summer 2019 schedules.

Manchester-Gothenburg, which will have two flights a week, was already announced at the end of last September, but Billund is a late addition with four times weekly services.

The Manchester rostrum includes 63 routes in total with eight new routes – to Bordeaux, Billund, Gothenburg, Kyiv, Marrakech, Marseille, Nantes and Thessaloniki – which will deliver over 5.4 million customers through Manchester Airport next year.

Billund is the birthplace of Lego and home to an ever-expanding range of theme parks and themed hotels.

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The announcement means that from April it will be possible to fly with three airlines from Denmark’s Jutland region to the British football city.

Sun-Air, as a franchise partner for British Airways, flies 11 times a week between Billund and Manchester divided into morning and evening departures on all weekdays, supplemented by an evening rotation on Sundays. Passenger numbers have been stable in recent years with around 23,000 annual passengers.

“We definitely believe there is room for Sun-Air in the market. The company has been on the route for many years and has made it a fantastic success,” Jesper Klausholm, marketing manager at Billund Airport, tells Check-In.dk. “When I look closely at the timetable, I am convinced that there is plenty of room for both operators.”

It is estimated that there are about 50,000 annual travellers between Jutland and Manchester, with up to half using Sun-Air from Billund and the rest travelling via Copenhagen or transiting at other UK airports.

“There is obviously great demand in the tourist segment, and the number of British tourists in western Denmark is large and increasing, as is the so-called VFR traffic [visiting relatives and friends], and this particular segment is well suited to Ryanair,” Klausholm claims.

Meanwhile, SAS announced before Christmas that it would fly from nearby Aarhus to Manchester from April 1, on Bombardier CRJ900 aircraft with room for 90 passengers three times a week on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. This excludes a summer break from June 28 to August 12.

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