BLACKPOOL Airport has been boosted by news the facility is budget airline Jet2.com’s leading centre for group bookings.
And the airline is celebrating top award recognition for the service it provides to groups looking to get away.
The airline received a prestigious accolade in the 2011 Group Travel Awards ‘Best Airline for Groups’ category, being named runner-up, second only to Virgin Atlantic and impressively beating British Airways, Easyjet, Emirates, Flybe and Monarch.
The awards are voted for by the 10,000 readers of the Group Travel Organiser magazine based on personal experience.
Jet2.com has revealed its top group holiday destinations from Blackpool Airport are the Spanish hotspots of Ibiza, Majorca and Alicante.
And with September being one of the most popular times for large parties to travel, the people of Blackpool are taking full advantage with a reported surge in bookings.
The majority of parties travelling to the top Spanish destinations are groups of friends, stags or hens, who are keen to make the most of great value air fares to book a break abroad rather than opt for a UK-based celebration. Meanwhile Faro on Portugal’s Algarve is popular with golfers, and school trips flock to cultural hotspots such as Pisa in Italy.
Steve Heapy chief commercial officer of Jet2.com, said: “It’s easy to see why the top three resorts of Majorca, Ibiza and Alicante, with their winning combination of beaches and nightlife, are so popular with parties.
“Typically groups take full advantage of the so-called ‘shoulder periods’, which are either side of the main summer holiday season, so at the moment we’re seeing a lot of bookings for September this year as well as May and June next year.
“These periods represent great value for money and of course the weather is still very good. Golfers are also keen on getaways in the cooler months, which are where our flights to Faro – which continue right through October – come into their own.”
The airline was rated highly for its specially-tailored service for parties of ten or more people, allowing name changes until two weeks before departure, and a loyalty scheme for group organisers to pay towards further flights.