LONDON – As UK regional carrier FlyBmi announced the suspension of all services on Saturday the 16th of February, a small number of carriers began immediate plans to take over many of the routes previously operated by FlyBmi.

Operations from such airports as Aberdeen and Newcastle seemed the natural takeover for growing Scottish regional carrier Loganair.

In the immediate days afterwards, Loganair began to recruit the majority of FlyBmi crews, as well as negotiating the arrangements to utilise FlyBmis grounded fleet of Embraer E135/145s.

Loganair Saab340 G-LGNJ Photo: Andreas Spaeth

New Routes and Further Expansion

Loganair immediately confirmed in the days following FlyBmis demise that it would take over the following routes:

  • Aberdeen-Esbjerg
  • Aberdeen-Bristol
  • Aberdeen-Oslo
  • (All Aberdeen flights previously operated by FlyBmi resume 4th March 2019)
  • Newcastle-Stavanger
  • Newcastle-Brussels
  • All Newcastle flights previously operated by FlyBmi resume 25th March 2019
  • Derry-Stansted
  • This Public Service Obligation route resumed on the 27th February
  • Bristol-Chester
  • Bristol-Toulouse
  • Loganair has also taken over the Airbus employee flights previously operated by FlyBmi, these resumed on the 25th February.

In addition to the routes, it has already taken over from defunct carrier FlyBmi, Loganair has gone further still to add some exciting additions to it’s UK network which will see the airline operate the following routes.

Derry-Manchester (begins 24th May)
Aberdeen-London Southend (begins 28th May)
Glasgow-London Southend (begins 28th May)

In addition to these recently announced routes, Loganair has previously revealed it will start services from Edinburgh to Guernsey, and Bournemouth to Jersey & Guernsey from 11th May 2019.

The airline is also expected to become to first airlines to operate from Carlisle Lake District Airport at some point in 2019 as per Airlineroute.

Loganair Embraer E145

A New Dawn for Loganair…

After the termination of its franchise agreement with Flybe in November 2016, many questioned the sensibility of such a split for the Scottish carrier given the growing problems that were emerging for regional carriers in the UK.

Since that split Flybe unsuccessfully attempted to oust Loganair as the main carrier serving the Shetland and Orkney Islands of Scotland.

Despite pairing up with Eastern Airways to launch its own services from Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Glasgow Flybe quickly found themselves with planes often flying with fewer than 6 passengers on those routes.

Loganair maintained its resolve, despite such an onslaught of sudden competition, and within 6 months of starting the flights, Flybe opted to suspend them due to the losses they were sustaining.
Flybe’s decision to withdraw from such a niche Scottish market on the outer island flights was widely seen as a decisive win for Loganair.

Reasons For Optimism in 2019?

Despite all the uncertainty facing the airline industry in the UK in 2019, there are reasons to be optimistic.

Out of the demise of one airline could result in the emergence of a new contender on the domestic front across the United Kingdom.

As Flybe continues with the takeover bid from Connect Airways (a joint takeover from Virgin Atlantic & Stobart Air) the uncertainty about their long-term sustainability on certain routes will no doubt be brought into question as the airline will undoubtedly be required to reduce their fleet and cut loss-making routes.

Therefore Loganairs expansion at such a time of uncertainty could well prove fruitful.