Wednesday, 19 December 2007

Ryanair expands Newquay services

I've written before about Newquay Airport and how these days things seem to be on the up there - no pun intended. The latest news is that low cost giant Ryanair is to expand their services at Newquay. This might come as a surprise because airline and airport had a spat not so long ago because of the £5 levy on passengers flying out of the airport. Evidently they have now kissed and made up because the five times a week service to Stansted is being increased to two flights a day plus there will be new routes to Spanish destinations, Girona and Alicante, three times a week.

It's difficult to make a balanced judgment on this business of more flying I find. As a basic principle we should curtail the amount of flying that goes on but it's not that simple. I've had one overseas holiday, to the island of La Palma in the Canaries, which I thoroughly enjoyed but, for various reasons, don't have any imminent plans to take to the air again. However I fully appreciate just how much some folk want their two weeks in the sun and also how much business has a global dimension these days so that there is a (questionable) need for more business travel. And of course many families now live in different countries, on different continents even, and would like to meet up occasionally. Now add to that potent mix the increasing size of the World's population and it can be seen just how difficult it is to restrict the growth of aviation.

My hope would be that people from Cornwall currently using Gatwick as their departure point for Spain might now consider Newquay. If those taking advantage of Ryanair's new services are the same as those who would have used another airport anyway then I wouldn't be too upset because Newquay has plenty of spare capacity and would become a more viable operation but more likely the upshot would just be more flights such is our insatiable appetite to take to the skies.

Interestingly some of the most environmentally aware people I know, with for most of the year a very light carbon footprint, are happy to go on a long haul flight. They are not package holiday junkies but have good valid reasons for doing this. And as I think I've stated before if there is a disaster in another part of the world then we need successful airlines to transit men and equipment as quickly as possible.

The whole debate about the growth of aviation is sure to hot up in the months and years to come.

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