LONDON – Turkish carrier Freebird has announced its summer 2023 program for flights between Turkey and the UK as the carrier continues to see great and increasing popularity in its services.
Turkey was one of the first destinations UK customers could travel to as we started to remove Lockdown restrictions and COVID-19 rules back in the summer of 2021. Since then the carrier has gone on to see a good and strong passenger flow in their first full year of services from Gatwick and Manchester.
Freebird Expands Services Further
The carrier has announced that in the summer of 2023 it will be increasing services from Gatwick to Antalya from a 4 times weekly service to a daily service, as well as continuing its 2 times weekly service which runs on a Wednesday and Saturday to Antalya from Manchester.
Carl Denton, UK Sales, Said: “Summer 2022 brought its challenges but one of the winners has been Turkey as destination and its value for money will ensure it will continue to be a success for next summer.”
“Freebird is a trade-focused Airline who work with Agents, Tour Operators and OTA’s and we look forward to building further on these relationships for next summer.”
Freebird will also be launching a new dedicated trade marketing support from their UK team, as they now are able to start taking bookings for their summer 2023 flights. They are also one of the few carriers to have suffered minimal delays on their services this year, despite the issues that plagued airports in the UK over the summer.
Freebird Fleet Aging Fast
While the announcement of these new services and increases in flight frequencies are great for not just the carrier bus but also for business and leisure travellers who are looking to head to Turkey or connect to further destinations south, there is no escaping the fact that the airlines fleet will soon be in a need of a possible neo order.
The airline operates an all-Airbus A320 fleet, with 14 aircraft in service, four of which are on lease from AerDragon, which they took delivery for back at the start of September this year. Their fleet average age per aircraft is now around 13 years old, which is not old for an aircraft, but with the obvious fuel and performance benefits of switching to the A320neo being laid out, perhaps we could see the carrier make the order soon.
It is not uncommon to see charter carrier such as Freebird operate older or second-hand market aircraft, there is a benefit to it with the main one being that their initial overhead costs to purchase more aircraft is much lower, allowing them in the short term to make great profits margins off the planes, but it does, however, come as long term costs, of higher fuel spend and lower revenue per passenger rates.
Despite all this, however, they have now established themselves as one of the main players in the UK- Turkish route market with the airline having launched these services back during a global pandemic to now running a daily flight service out of London Gatwick.