New co-operation agreement – Aurigny and Blue Islands harmonise services to improve connectivity to the Channel Islands
Aurigny and Blue Islands have today reached in-principal agreement to codeshare on selected routes connecting the Channel Islands with the UK, aiming to restore connectivity to both Jersey and the Bailiwick of Guernsey as the islands emerge from the Covid-19 Pandemic.
The two carriers plan to harmonise their schedules between Guernsey, Jersey, Exeter and Birmingham to offer same-day return services on certain days of the week, reintroducing services previously popular with islanders and inbound travelers alike. The agreement will further entail the carriers applying collective effort to rebuild flight frequencies between Guernsey and Southampton, intended to provide passengers with sustainable flight coverage on this important lifeline route, as well as the connection of the Aurigny and Blue Islands’ wider networks to provide flight options for the residents of Alderney, connecting in Guernsey through to Jersey.
It is envisaged that the co-operation agreement, subject to consultation with relevant authorities, will be implemented in a phased approach and will commence following the anticipated easing of travel restrictions in July 2021.
Whilst Aurigny and Blue Islands will remain independent, co-operating in the post CV19 environment will provide more certainty and choice to islanders and passengers from mainland UK. The agreement does not cover pricing, promotion or customer care, which will all continue to be managed by each airline independently and leaving a healthy level of competitive tension in place.
In a joint statement Aurigny CEO Nico Bezuidenhout and Blue Islands CEO Rob Veron said:
“We are delighted to announce a co-operation agreement. Our aim is to sustainably rebuild, preserving consumer choice and ensuring critical air connectivity as we come out of the pandemic. We firmly believe this agreement will help to bring stability for both passengers and our employees. Whilst we remain competitors, we will continue to seek out areas where efficiencies may be gained from collaboration – ensuring the viability and sustainability of this essential part of island infrastructure.”