Operations reviewed

Loganair chief cuts routes after airline ‘falls short’

Luke Farajallah: getting back to principles that made us successful

Loganair, Scotland’s regional airline, will cut a number of routes and reduce others following a review of operations by new chief executive Luke Farajallah.

The company said it is addressihng a number of concerns that have been raised for a “considerable time”, especially from core markets in remote parts of Scotland.

In order to stabilise the business Mr Farajallah says the changes will reduce the amount of operational disruption that Loganair’s customers and crews have been experiencing for over 18 months.  He believes it see a fall in the number of flights delayed and cancelled.

From 10 May the airline will cancel services between Aberdeen and Teesside, Aberdeen and Newcastle, as well as Glasgow and Southampton.

Several other routes will see minor adjustments to frequency, in varying stages, until the end of the summer schedule on 26 October.

Mr Farajallah took over in March from Jonathan Hinkles who left suddenly after the board agreed to bring an end to his seven and a half years at the helm.

Within weeks Daily Business revealed the new CEO’s warning on trading for the financial year ending 31 March. He said investment in the Scottish airline should come through in future results.

Announcing today’s route changes, Mr Farajallah said: “Since my first day as CEO of Loganair last month, I have been listening carefully to feedback from our loyal customers and hard-working crew.

“We appreciate the changes we are announcing today may impact some customers whose bookings may need to change. While we apologise to customers affected, this decision is one that has been made for the greater good of the vast majority of customers who must be able to book and fly with confidence, especially from some of the most remote parts of the UK.

“Loganair is the UK’s largest regional airline, and we are getting back to the basic principles that have made us successful for over six decades.

“We have been falling short of the service levels expected of us by our loyal customers and amazing crew for over 18 months.”

Loganair said all UK airlines have been experiencing aircraft supply chain problems and crew shortages which have been exacerbated by post-Brexit regulations, limiting UK airlines’ ability to recruit pilots from the EU.

Additionally, regulatory barriers such as the blocking of student loans for trainee pilots contribute to the growing shortage of qualified pilots available, it said.

Routes that will see temporary, minor reductions to services are as follows

  • Edinburgh to Southampton                         reduced from 4, to 3 x daily
  • Inverness to Manchester                              reduced from 11, to 9 per week
  • Inverness to Stornoway                                reduced from 10, to 9 per week
  • Isle of Man to Birmingham                          Saturday services removed
  • Glasgow to City of Derry                              Thursday services removed
  • Glasgow to Donegal                                     Friday services removed
  • Newcastle to Southampton                        reduced from 15 to 13 per week

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