Eastern Airways To Increase Frequencies On Cornwall PSO Route

The regional airline sees strong leisure and VFR demand for flights to Newquay.

Credit: Keith Larby/Alamy Live News

UK regional airline Eastern Airways will add capacity on a UK Public Service Obligation (PSO) route from London Gatwick (LGW), suggesting the connection has generated demand.

Eastern Airways is being provided £1.8 million ($2.2 million) by the UK government over two years to fly between LGW and Newquay (NQW) in the country of Cornwall in south west of England. The carrier started operating the route 2X-daily in December 2021 with an ATR 72-600 aircraft. 

Now Eastern Airways is adding a third flight on Mondays, Thursdays and Fridays. The airline said in a statement that passengers can travel on a “75-minute flight on one of our comfortable ATR 72-600 aircraft” instead of taking “comparable journeys … [lasting] a minimum of 5 hours by car and 7 hours by rail.” 

Eastern Airways said a recent study it undertook had shown that 60% of passengers on the LGW-NQW route are using it for either leisure or VFR travel.

“As we hit the peak summer school period, increasing connectivity for those using this already popular service is key for Eastern Airways,” GM Roger Hage said. “The introduction of the midday service [on three weekdays] now provides a greater range of options for individuals, couples and families that are relying on this time-efficient service.”