Sunday, 16 August 2009

Ryanair to expand at a revamped Leeds Bradford Airport

Budget airline Ryanair has chosen Leeds Bradford International Airport as a new base for its flights, a move which Ryanair claim is going to create 1,000 new jobs for the area. Ryanair already has three routes from Leeds Bradford, to Alicante, Girona and Dublin, but an impressive 14 more are to be added covering Carcassonne, Faro, Ibiza, Knock, Krakow, Limoges, Malaga, Malta, Montpellier, Murcia, Nantes, Palma, Pisa and Venice. It is hoped that the new flights will be launched in March 2010, making Leeds Bradford the 34th base for Ryanair.

This announcement follows in the wake of the airport getting planning permission to redevelop its relatively small and simple terminal building, and also to develop the road access to the airport. This plan, backed by the private equity owners Bridgepoint, is hoped to provide top class amenities and boost the status of the airport as the main gateway to Yorkshire.

The project will include a new two-storey extension with new check-in and security facilities, a new departure lounge, and retail area with shops, bars and cafes. The passenger security screening zone will be extended and the domestic baggage reclaim hall will be revamped.

It has been noted that the increased number of flights will make France more accessible from Yorkshire, and this may well be of interest to those looking to buy second homes in rural France.
Ryanair’s expansion at Leeds Bradford will no doubt be interesting news to rival carrier Jet2 which has its headquarters at the airport, especially as Jet2 is already serving nine of the new routes proposed by Ryanair. Jet2 currently flies 36 routes out of Leeds Bradford.

Ryanair plans to put about £84 million of investment into the airport.

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