The first flight on a new route from Liverpool John Lennon Airport (LJLA) to George Best Belfast City Airport took to the skies this morning, Monday, February 2.

Budget airline Flybe’s service, which airport bosses believe could generate an additional 50,000 departing passengers a year, was announced in November.

It will now be operating three departures a day, Monday to Friday and one departure on Saturdays and Sundays.

This morning, LJLA tweeted picture of staff with champagne and cake ahead of the inaugural flight, along with the message: “Congratulations to Flybe on their new route from Liverpool to Belfast City! We hope all departing passengers have a great flight.”

Belfast has a well-established business and financial services sector and the new service is expected to be particularly popular with the region’s business passengers.

At the time of the new route’s announcement, Mark Povall, director of air service development for JLA, said: “Flybe has been operating from Liverpool for a number of years and we’re delighted that they are committed to expanding their business from here.

“We know that demand for this service to Belfast City is strong and we will also continue to look at further opportunities for Flybe to serve the Liverpool city region, at what is an exciting time for both the airline and ourselves.”

Flybe already operates a service from LJLA to the Isle of Man.

The airline’s chief commercial officer, Paul Simmons, added: “Flybe has, over the last 12 months, undergone a significant overhaul of the business and this has resulted in a more cost-effective, efficient and flexible operation, enabling us to increase the number of routes we can offer to better serve the travelling needs of both our business and leisure customers.”

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