Independently-owned Greek carrier Minoan Air revealed at World Routes in Abu Dhabi this week that it is poised to launch services from the United Kingdom after announcing its intent to launch commercial passenger operations from London Oxford Airport.
The small regional carrier inaugurated charter and ACMI operations from a base in Heraklion, Crete on June 1, 2012 and has recently successfully completed a series of domestic charter services within the Spanish market. It has now embarked on growth into the scheduled market in Greece and is set to become the first Greek airline to establish a base outside of Greece.
Following the completion of its Request for Proposals (RFP) process with Route Exchange, the online air service development programme from Routesonline, Minoan Air's management team has now reached a tentative deal with London Oxford Airport to base up to three Fokker 50 turboprops at the facility to inaugurate flights to Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Dublin, Edinburgh and Munich from around January 2013, subject to final agreement. More routes are under examination and Minoan Air remains in talks with London Oxford Airport over a second phase of growth.
The new routes will be operated on a mix of daily and twice daily frequencies, according to Marcos Caramalengos, Chief Commercial Officer, Minoan Air, and will be introduced on a phased basis over a two to three month period in early 2013. "The objective of the airline is to offer a premium service with no additional charges," he said. "The frequency and departure time for each route will be tailored to the requirement of the business passenger for each specific route."
Ahead of its debut in the UK market, Minoan Air will start to operate fourteen return flights per week from Kristianstad to Stockholm Arlanda as it emabrks on growth in the Scandinavian market too. This route will be operated on a virtual basis on behalf of Flyglinjen Vatterbygden AB, although the London Oxford network will be flown under Minoan Air's own brand. In view of its expansion into European markets, the carrier will migrate to Worldticket for reservations and distribution to all major GDS platforms.
To view our EXCLUSIVE video with the senior management at Minoan Air click here.