Airlines have moved quickly to take advantage of the Algarve’s surge in popularity among British holidaymakers who no longer have to endure 14 days of self-isolation on their return.
The UK government’s decision to exempt Portugal from its list of countries subject to quarantine restrictions for returning tourists has propelled the Algarve to the top of the destinations list for many frustrated tourists whose plans for a summer break in the southern European sun had previously been thwarted.
Now they are returning in droves, the main airline companies – including Jet2.com, Wizz Air and Ryanair – are boosting their schedules to cater for increased demand, and Faro Airport’s service staff has been bolstered to smooth their passage through this key international gateway to the Algarve.
New Ryanair Connections
Ryanair announced it would be strengthening its connection between the UK and Portugal over the coming weeks (11 September to 24 October) with 14 additional flights to Faro every week from 12 UK airports: Bournemouth, Bristol, Cardiff, Edinburgh, East Midlands, Glasgow Prestwick, Liverpool, London Southend, Luton, Manchester, Newcastle and Stansted.
“Ryanair is thrilled to strengthen the connection between the UK and sunny Faro over the coming weeks,” said the airline’s Dara Brady, “making it easier than ever for UK holidaymakers to book that long-awaited trip in the sun.”
Ryanair had previously announced the restoration of its weekly Aberdeen-Faro air route as part of the summer schedule.
Expanded Jet2.com Flights
Welcoming the “eagerly-awaited change in government advice regarding travel to Portugal”, Jet2.com resumed the company’s flights and holidays programme to Faro from 24 August.
In a press release announcing the new schedule, Jet2.com said, “The sun-soaked Algarve has continued to experience strong demand from our customers despite the government advice that has been in place. We have seen strong demand to Faro since the change in advice and have responded swiftly to the surge in popularity, adding more than 100 new flights from Birmingham, East Midlands, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leeds Bradford, London Stansted, Newcastle and Manchester.
“We are already operating multiple weekly services to Faro from all nine of our UK bases, and this increased capacity will give customers and independent travel agents even more choice and flexibility when it comes to choosing holidays to the Portuguese sunshine.”
According to Steve Heapy, CEO of Jet2.com and Jet2holidays, “Customers are responding to the welcome change in government advice by booking their much-needed holidays in the Portuguese sunshine, and we are responding to that by adding more flights and seats. We want our customers to enjoy their well-deserved holidays, and our decision to act quickly and add even more capacity to Faro ensures they will have plenty of choice.
“With a fantastic choice of flights and holidays, not to mention fantastic deals and free child places available, those looking to get away can take advantage of great choice and value.”
Doncaster to Faro with Wizz Air
Faro Airport is also benefiting from a decision by Wizz Air to expand its services from Doncaster Sheffield Airport. Doncaster has become the airline company’s second base in the UK, together with London Luton, and it plans to allocate one Airbus A320 aircraft to the Yorkshire airport, and add seven new routes – including Faro Airport from 23 October – to its existing Doncaster Sheffield network of 10 routes.
Wizz Air launched its first flight from Doncaster Sheffield Airport 14 years ago, and since then the company – which describes itself as “Europe’s greenest airline” (based on annual carbon-dioxide emissions) – has grown to be the airport’s largest carrier. Currently, the airline carries one million passengers every year on ultra-low central and eastern European routes.
Now, with the creation of the new base at Doncaster Sheffield Airport, Wizz Air plans to launch new connections to Faro (Mondays and Fridays), Alicante and Málaga in Spain, Larnaca in Cyprus, Lublin in Poland, Kosice in Slovakia and Suceava in Romania.
This will increase the annual capacity of Doncaster Sheffield Airport by 150,000 seats, according to Wizz Air, “providing local passengers with even more affordable and exciting travel opportunities”.
The addition of the new Airbus A320 at Doncaster means Wizz Air now has 11 aircraft permanently based in the UK and, with the new routes, will have nearly 1.8 million seats on sale on its 107 routes from the UK for the remainder of 2020.
Click here for comprehensive Faro Airport flight information.