Running a French Holiday Gite in Rural Brittany

Friday, January 11, 2008

A "squadron" of budget airline changes for Brittany airports

Collecting together some of the recent route and airport changes that the budget airlines have announced for flights into Brittany ...

First up is the grand-daddy of route changes, RyanAir, who continually confuse and confound me by adding routes at the start of the year and then removing them later on in the year, making it very difficult to keep up to date the travel route options page for our Brittany website.

RyanAir have recently announced new routes from Liverpool to Nantes and Bournemouth to Nantes (the latter announcement is I feel a bit of a fraud as I picked up the same "new" Bournemouth/Nantes route news on this blog in June 2007).

Next up is Irish stable-mate Aer Arran who have quietly dropped without any kind of announcement their Bristol to Nantes route, but made a splash with their first route into Brest airport by announcing a new Cork to Brest route.

To date EasyJet have not had any routes into Brittany or Normandy but following their acquisition of GB Airways last year which I predicted might lead to more routes, EasyJet have announced their first route into Brittany with a new Gatwick to Nantes route from 31st May. Actually it's not a completely new route as GB Airways have been operating this route for some time, but now you can book it via the EasyJet website.

... and finally, a completely new airline that until very recently I'd never heard of, SkyBus.

Skybus seems to have been up to now a Scilly Islands-based operator with just one route on the website operating from Newquay in Cornwall to/from St. Mary's in the Isles of Scilly (with some flights stopping off en-route at Lands End Airport), and three additional routes on the Isles of Scilly travel website from Bristol, Exeter and Southampton to St. Mary's.

Well now Skybus are branching out with a Newquay to Cardiff route from 10th March, and relevant for me, a new Newquay to St Brieuc route from 17th March 2008. St Brieuc is the regional capital of department 22 (Cotes d'Armor) in Brittany and has grown into being a large coastal town with quaint harbour, the nearby sand-marshes of Baie des St Brieuc and miles and miles of wide sandy beaches at nearby Rosslaire. St Brieuc airport is probably closer to our Brittany Gite than any of the other Brittany airports as the town is only about 40 minutes drive from our holiday home.

Until the end of January Skybus are doing special offer introductory flights from Newquay to St Brieuc for just £55 each way, with standard fares rising to £69 afterwards. Still a good price as they're fully flexible and inclusive of airport charges.

So there you go, quite a few Brittany flight additions and subtractions, which as usual I try to keep up to date along with the other ferry and airline choices for getting to Brittany on our Gite website.

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