Turkish airline Sun Express (ZQ/SXS) has operated its first scheduled flight from London Luton to Antalya, Turkey today.
Antalya is the first of four new routes that the airline will operate to Turkey from London Luton Airport (LTN/EGGW) with Ankara, Gaziantep and Bodrum launching later this month.
Antalya based Sun Express will operate the flights twice-weekly (except Gaziantep which is weekly) and they will operate in addition to the airlines existing route to Izmir which has already been running for 3 years.
The flights to Ankara and Gaziantep are the only direct flights to these airports from the UK.
Wilken Bellmann, Head of Network Planning and Scheduling for SunExpress said: “I was delighted to be at London Luton Airport today to see the first passengers off to Antalya. We are extremely happy to have been able to launch so many new routes from the UK in 2018, and very pleased that Turkey is back on the map for British tourists. Our flights to Ankara and Gaziantep will undoubtedly make it much easier for the local Turkish community to visit family and friends.”
Jonathan Pollard, Chief Commercial Officer for LLA said: “We have worked closely with SunExpress since they joined us as a partner three years ago and it is fitting they have chosen the year of our 80th anniversary to increase the number of destinations offered from LLA. Our collaboration with SunExpress comes as we near the end of our £160m redevelopment programme, and we are looking forward to continuing our work with them during this exciting time for LLA.”
Also attending launch celebrations was Taner Beyoglu, Director of the Turkish Culture and Tourism Office for the UK and Ireland. Mr Beyoglu said: “I was very happy to be here to share this occasion with SunExpress and London Luton Airport. It is wonderful to see so many new Turkish destinations being launched by SunExpress, which will offer more choice to British tourists visiting Turkey and also a better holiday experience with easier access to many fascinating resorts. On a personal level, I am very pleased that it will now be easier for me to return to see my friends and family in Ankara, where I live when I am in Turkey.”
Sun Express is a holiday airline that is a joint venture between Lufthansa and Turkish Airlines. It operates around 1,200 flights per week using its fleet of Boeing 737-800 aircraft.