European low-cost carrier Wizz Air today opened its London Gatwick base. The airline has been expanding rapidly despite the current pandemic and had been keen to move into London Gatwick as others moved out.
There has been a lot of change at London Gatwick recently. Once Britain’s second busiest, the airport has been relatively empty in the past half a year. Long-standing carriers such as Virgin Atlantic have moved out of the airport, while many other airlines are operating hugely reduced services from London’s southern airport. However, Wizz is keen to move in.
London Gatwick base opened
Today Wizz Air celebrated the opening of its third aircraft base in the United Kingdom, London Gatwick. Alongside London Luton airport, the base is also the airline’s second London base. The third UK base is Doncaster Sheffield. Before opening the base, Wizz did fly to London Gatwick from its other aircraft bases.
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Initially, just one aircraft will be based at London Gatwick Airport. This will be one of the airline’s Airbus A321 aircraft. With the addition of the aircraft, Wizz can increase the number of routes it offers from the airport. It’s not a huge surprise given how many routes and bases the airline has been launching this year.
The airline isn’t hanging around launching its four new routes, two going live today and two going live tomorrow. They are as follows:
- London Gatwick to Athens – Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday, Sunday
- London Gatwick to Naples – Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday, Sunday
- London Gatwick to Malta – Monday, Wednesday, Friday
- London Gatwick to Lanzarote – Monday, Wednesday, Friday.
Commenting on the new base’s launch, the airline’s UK managing director, Owain Jones, said,
“Today marks an important milestone for Wizz Air in the UK, as we paint south London’s skies pink with our Gatwick based aircraft’s inaugural flight. This opening is further evidence of our commitment to the UK market, as we create local jobs and deliver on our promise of providing affordable, direct flights to exciting destinations.”
Empty space at Gatwick
Since the current situation began, Gatwick Airport has been reasonably quiet. Indeed, at the height of the pandemic, it was less busy than London Luton. Many of its home carriers such as easyJet had grounded all flights, while long-haul carriers were opting for London Heathrow over Gatwick if they were flying to the city at all.
The airport was dealt a considerable blow when Virgin Atlantic announced that it would give up its presence at the airport in favor of London Heathrow. The south-London facility has been Virgin’s home since the airline was founded all of those years ago.
As such, Gatwick will surely be pleased to welcome its newest resident.
What do you make of the new Wizz Air base? Will you use the airline’s services from Gatwick? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!