BA call it a day between Jersey and Southampton

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The airline announced yesterday that it will withdraw from the route on Saturday 25 October.

It currently operates up to five flights to and from Jersey each weekday and up to ten flights at the weekend using a 50-seat Dash-8 aircraft.

Unfortunately, the route has been losing money for some time and in the current climate we are having to make some tough decisions in the best interests of the company,’ said David Evans, managing director of BA CitiExpress, the wholly owned subsidiary that operates the service.

‘Therefore we have no alternative but to withdraw from the route.

BA’s departure from the Jersey – Southampton route is part of a wider review of its operations at the south coast airport.

The airline is also axing its Southampton – Belfast service although it is increasing the frequency of other routes.

Earlier this year, BA stopped flying to Aberdeen, Dublin and the Isle of Man but started a service to London City.

A has flown between Jersey and Southampton since 1999 when it took over from KLM UK after the Dutch airline pulled off the route.

Last summer BA transferred its local base from Jersey to Southampton to consolidate its operations at the BAA-owned airport.

The airline was the sole operator on the route until Flybe began a service in April.

sked if Flybe’s arrival had prompted the withdrawal, a company spokesman said that the route had only made a small profit prior to April but a second operator had not helped the situation.

But Flybe’s general manager in the Channel Islands, Ian Taylor, denied that his airline had tipped the balance.

There has been significant growth on the route this year and last month alone there was a 49 per cent increase in passengers across both airlines,’ he said.

‘We have obviously made inroads into BA’s market share but I suspect this is more a corporate decision by BA rather than as a result of Flybe pushing them off.

A spokesman for BA’s franchise partner in Jersey, Airline Services CI Ltd – who deal with all the handling and ticketing locally – said that the company was currently evaluating what effect the withdrawal would have on staff numbers.

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