The Welsh Government has awarded an air service contract to Eastern Airways to secure air travel between Cardiff and Anglesey for the next four years.
The Public Service Obligation (PSO) contract runs between February 2019 and February 2023 with scheduled air service providing two flights each weekday in both directions between north and south Wales.
Eastern Airways says since March 2017 it has achieved growth on the route of around 40%.
“Since stepping in to cover this incredibly important economic link between the north and south of Wales, we have proactively grown passenger numbers as part of the Flybe branded service,” said Roger Hage, Eastern Airways’ general manager commercial and operations. “We’re delighted to have been awarded the contract to help further grow the capacity on the service in fully supporting the Transport Minister, and both Cardiff Airport and Anglesey Council’s ambition to increase accessibility and also improve connectivity to other services offered by our franchise partner Flybe, plus Qatar, KLM, Ryanair and TUI at Cardiff.”
Economy and Transport Minister Ken Skates, said: “Wales needs to be better connected. Eastern Airways shares our ambitions to significantly grow the route over the next four years, thereby increasing the economic benefit to Wales. I hope this will include Eastern Airways operating its Jetstream 41 at the full capacity of 29 seats, offering almost 50% more seats than it is currently able to offer.
“This increase would be subject to the UK Government supporting the reclassification of Anglesey Airport. This would enable the full capacity utilisation of the larger aircraft helping bring exciting growth opportunities to the region.
“The need for an increase in capacity on the route has been clearly demonstrated over the last two years. With increased efficiencies and higher yield due to additional passenger revenue, this increase in capacity would see a reduction in the subsidy over the four years of the contract when compared to continuing with a 19 seat operation,” Skates continued.
He said that the route facilitates access to internal markets for Welsh businesses, adding: “This quick and effective internal mode of transport will be vital post Brexit.”