easyJet has launched a new base at Birmingham Airport creating 140 direct jobs for pilots and crew in the UK and supporting around 1,200 jobs in total.

The airline has its biggest ever UK programme and more than 57 million seats will be on sale to and from the UK, an increase of around 10% compared to last year.

Passengers can take advantage of 16 new flight routes whether they choose to books flights only or opt for a package holiday.

The new routes include Sharm El Sheikh, Tenerife, Antalya, Barcelona, Berlin and Rhodes.

The addition of more aircraft at the airport will mean the airline can further expand its network from Birmingham Airport with new routes for holiday makers and business travellers alike.

With direct connections between Birmingham and primary European city airports including Amsterdam, Geneva, Paris Charles de Gaulle and Berlin Brandenburg, the new base will serve millions of business travellers the airline carries to and from the UK each year.

easyJet's passenger numbers at Birmingham are expected to be up nearly 60% this year versus last year and this summer season is also expected to be the biggest ever for easyJet Holidays.

Flights to and from Birmingham are set to carry one of the highest proportions of easyJet Holidays’ customers on the network with destinations like Majorca, Dalaman, Antalya, Sharm el Sheikh and Tunisia looking most popular for this summer.

Johan Lundgren, CEO of easyJet, said: “We are excited to open our newest UK base at Birmingham today, providing more choice, competition and connectivity as well as supporting over 1200 jobs for the region.

“This base is enabling us to unlock the opportunity of the strong demand which exists for both leisure and business travel, as well as further grow our share of the package holiday market.

“We see much untapped potential at the airport providing the opportunity to grow further in future years.”

Nick Barton, CEO of Birmingham Airport (BHX), said: “Today sees our growing partnership with easyJet reach new heights as the airline bases three aircraft here at Birmingham Airport. Customers can now take advantage of the airline’s 16 new routes and have the flexibility of flight only or a full package holiday.   

“easyJet has been a partner airline for 17 years.  Its expansion here at Birmingham Airport is testament to the service, quality, price, reliability and choice of destination that its customers have come to expect. 

“We are looking forward to working with easyJet to further grow its destination list for our customers.” 

You can find out more information and book your getaway via the Birmingham Airport and easyJet websites.

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Andy Street, Mayor of the West Midlands, said: “easyJet’s decision to set up this new base at BHX will be warmly welcomed by thousands of holidaymakers across the West Midlands and beyond.

“The increase in destinations is not only great news for those heading off to the sun this summer but also for our business community, helping them forge new overseas trade links.

“easyJet’s decision is also a vote of confidence in Birmingham Airport and the people working in our aviation industry. The new base will support hundreds of jobs and help the airport to grow and thrive in the years ahead.”

easyJet already serves domestic connections and international routes from Birmingham to popular beach and city destinations including Amsterdam, Geneva, Milan, Naples, Lisbon,  Faro  and Palma de Mallorca.