Flybe adds routes, BAe 146s


Flybe BAe 146s G-TBAE, -JEAY, and -JEAK

A diverse set of BAe 146s flying for Flybe at Southampton: G-TBAE, -JEAY, and -JEAK (TZ Aviation)

Flybe celebrated its first anniversary as a low-fare airline by announcing a substantial expansion in the routes it flies from its base at Exeter International Airport, Devon. New routes to Alicante, Malaga, Murcia, Belfast City, Edinburgh, and Glasgow will be launched from 28 March 2004. The airline plans to use its 146s on the three Spanish routes. The move follows previous expansion from Southampton and Birmingham, where Flybe is now the largest operator. To support its expansion, Flybe has leased several additional 146s, including three series 300s (a former buzz example, one of the former National Jet Italia examples that had been stored at Exeter, and the former Air Jet example that had been impounded at Bergamo) and series 200QC wet-leased from Titan. The BAE Systems Corporate Air Travel 146s have also frequently been leased in. The airline also recently placed an order for 17 Bombardier Dash 8 Q400 turboprops. Longer-term, it is also beginning to evaluate options to replace its 146s, although this would probably require substantial additional financing.

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