By Ken Fielding/kenfielding, CC BY-SA 3.0,

· Airline celebrates three years of Cardiff base opening

· Expansion to three aircraft base

· 124% increase in passengers since June 2015

· Number of routes grown from 10 to 17

· Top three routes – Edinburgh, Dublin, Paris

Flybe, Europe’s largest regional airline, has today (1st June 2018) reinforced its commitment to Wales by jointly celebrating with Cardiff Airport three successful years of operating from the aircraft base having recently positioned a third Embraer jet to service a 124 per cent increase in passengers and an almost doubling of routes during this time period.

The milestone was marked with a lively birthday celebration at the airport with Flybe Regional Sales Manager, Paul Willoughby and Cardiff Airport’s Financial Director, Huw Lewis handing out specially branded cupcakes to surprised passengers as they prepared to jet off to Dublin.

Flybe opened its new base at Cardiff Airport with a 10-year agreement in June 2015 and the expansion to date has helped stimulate further growth in the local economy. This has included job creation and a contribution to tourism arrivals with passengers taking advantage of Flybe’s wider connecting services from the hub airports it serves.

Roy Kinnear, Flybe’s Chief Commercial Officer said: “Flybe’s strong performance and increased growth over the past three years demonstrates our commitment to the national airport of Wales. We have continued to fine tune our schedule with added frequency and new routes that is testament to our flexibility and responsiveness in meeting customer needs.

“We look forward to continued growth and to providing customers with access to an even wider choice of routes to and from Wales. Having such choices to travel to and from local regional airports is something we at Flybe consider a necessity, not a luxury.”

Cardiff Airport’s Finance Director and Company Secretary, Huw Lewis, added: “It has been so exciting to see just how much Flybe’s base has gone from strength to strength in three short years. What started as a two aircraft base with a modest selection of destination has flourished into a thriving three aircraft base with more routes being added all the time such as Venice, Rome and Berlin Tegel.

“Our customers were asking for more flights, offered at convenient times and at the right price and Flybe has continued to deliver, whilst also entering into franchise agreements that further expand the choice of available destinations. Today is an opportunity to reflect on how far Flybe’s base has come and we look forward to its continued success at Wales’ national airport.”

Flybe operates from Cardiff to seven countries with a choice of 17 routes that offer up to 78 return flights a week, with the three most popular services being to Edinburgh, Dublin and Paris Charles de Gaulle.

Two of the airline’s franchise partners operating out of Cardiff are Eastern Airways, which operates to Anglesey, Newcastle and Aberdeen; and Blue Islands which operates summer flights to Guernsey in the Channel Islands, all of which are bookable at

Flybe also has codeshare agreements with many long haul airlines that provide convenient onward connections between Wales and the rest of the world, giving customers a wealth of extra travel options when booked direct with the relevant international carrier or travel agent. Examples are to Dublin and onwards with Aer Lingus; to Paris with Air France and Finnair; to Edinburgh and Munich with Etihad; to Glasgow with Virgin Atlantic, and via Milan with Alitalia.