Birmingham Airport-based Flybe ceases trading with all flights cancelled and passengers with tickets urged not to travel to airports

The Birmingham-based airline Flybe ceased trading today with all flights cancelled.

A Flybe aircraft ready to take off at Birmingham Airport
A Flybe aircraft ready to take off at Birmingham Airport

Flybe, which has collapsed into administration for the second time, also operated scheduled services from Belfast City and Heathrow to airports across the UK and to Amsterdam and Geneva.

The UK Civil Aviation Authority made the announcement at 4am and has advised people booked on flights not go to the airports as flights will not be operating.

Flights to Belfast, Geneva, Amsterdam and Edinburgh from Birmingham are all cancelled.

Flybe customers who still need to travel, will need to make their own alternative travel arrangements via other airlines, rail or coach operators.

The UK CAA will provide advice and information to affected passengers. More information can be found on Flybe.com and caa.co.uk/news when it is available.

Information will also be made available on the UK CAA's Twitter feed @UK_CAA

A spokesperson for Birmingham Airport said: "While we are sorry to hear Flybe has gone into administration, we would assure customers that all Flybe's routes are well served by other airlines.”

Paul Smith, consumer director at the UK CAA, said: “It is always sad to see an airline enter administration and we know that Flybe's decision to stop trading will be distressing for all of its employees and customers.

“We urge passengers planning to fly with this airline not to go to the airport as all Flybe flights are cancelled. For the latest advice, Flybe customers should visit the Civil Aviation Authority’s website or our Twitter feed for more information.”

Mayor of the West Midlands Andy Street said on Twitter: "Incredibly sad news about Flybe this morning, and my thoughts are with all those whose jobs are at risk.

"I’m confident many will be able to move into work at BHX and the other airlines based there. My team will work with the airport and the Department for Work and Pensions to support those affected."

The regional carrier has collapsed into administration and immediately ceasing trading, after barely a year of operations in its revived guise with its base at Birmingham Airport.

David Pike and Mike Pink of insolvency firm Interpath Advisory have been appointed as joint administrators.

The airline was operating a fleet of De Havilland Canada Dash 8 turboprops.

“Flybe has now ceased trading and all flights from and to the UK operated by Flybe have been cancelled and will not be rescheduled,” a statement posted on its website says.

It says anyone due to fly with Flybe today or in the future, should not travel to the airport unless they have arranged an alternative flight with another airline. Flybe is not able to arrange alternative flights for passengers.

Anyone with a Flybe booking sold by an intermediary that includes travel on a Flybe flight, should contact the relevant airline or booking/ ravel agent to confirm if there is any impact to their travel plans as the intermediary may be able to support them with alternative arrangements and provide further advice regarding any claim they may need to make.

Customers are also advised to monitor the CAA website for further information at caa.co.uk/news

The administrators can be contacted at flybecustomers@interpathadvisory.com

Clive Wratten, chief executive of the Business Travel Association, said: “The collapse of Flybe is dreadful news for leisure and corporate travellers.

"Their predominantly UK focused network gave them a vital role in British business. With the train strikes next week, our economy is once more being brought to a standstill.

"It’s imperative that our domestic infrastructure is brought in line with our global ambitions.

"Our thoughts are with all this impacted by the loss of Flybe today.”

Flybe also served European destinations including Amsterdam and Geneva from Birmingham.

The original Flybe, which had its headquarters at Exeter Airport, fell into administration in March 2020 with the loss of 2.400 jobs after a failed takeover ahead of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Assets of the collapsed airline were later acquired for £1 in April 2021 by Thyme Opco, a company affiliated with Cyrus Capital, an investment firm which held a stake in the carrier prior to its collapse. Flybe operations restarted in April last year with the first flight from Birmingham to Belfast.

Dave Pflieger, the former boss of Alaskan carrier Ravn Air Group which entered bankruptcy protection in 2020, was appointed chief executive.

Mr Pike and Mr Pink have a history handling airline insolvencies and previously handled the liquidation of Norwegian Air UK.

Flybe had planned to operate up to 530 flights per week across 23 routes, serving airports such as Belfast City, Birmingham, East Midlands, Glasgow, Heathrow and Leeds Bradford.

The Government said that its "immediate priority" would be to support anyone trying to get home and those who have lost their jobs.

"This remains a challenging environment for airlines, both old and new, as they recover from the pandemic, and we understand the impact this will have on Flybe's passengers and staff.

"Our immediate priority is to support people travelling home and employees who have lost their jobs," a spokesperson said.

"The Civil Aviation Authority is providing advice to passengers to help them make their journeys as smoothly and affordably as possible.

"The majority of destinations served by Flybe are within the UK with alternative transport arrangements available.

"We recognise that this is an uncertain time for affected employees and their families.

"Jobcentre Plus, through its Rapid Response Service, stands ready to support any employee affected."

The revived Flybe had expected to create about 200 jobs in the Birmingham and West Midlands area over three years. Its headquarters was at Diamond House at the airport. Five aircraft were based at Birmingham.

Its summer schedule had been due to start on March 26 with new routes to Aberdeen and Bergerac in France.

Flybe started as Jersey European Airways in 1979 and was later renamed British European in 2000 and received the Flybe name in 2002.

* The UK Civil Aviation Authority has issued further advice to UK consumers impacted by Flybe's administration.

People who booked directly with Flybe and paid by credit card may be protected under Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act 1974 and should contact their card issuer for further information. Similarly, if they paid by debit or charge card they should contact their card issuer for advice as they may be able to make a claim under their charge back rules.

Anyone who purchased travel insurance that includes cover for scheduled airline failure, known as SAFI, you should contact their insurer. If they did not book directly with Flybe and purchasedtheir tickets through a third party, they should contact their booking or travel agent in the first instance.

Passengers who booked directly with the company via either a credit, charge or debit card may alternatively be able to make a claim through their card provider. Some card providers will ask for a negative response letter confirming the position. Passengers may also be able to make a claim against their travel insurer.

The negative response letter will be published shortly by the CAA

People who paid the airline directly by credit card might be protected by Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act 1974. They should check with your card issuer for further advice. They may have similar cover if they paid by Visa debit card and should check with their bank.

If they booked your ticket through an airline ticket agent they should speak to the agent in the first instance; they may have provided travel insurance that includes Scheduled Airline Failure cover.

Some airlines and airline ticket agents will offer customers either a specific SAFI policy or include similar protection within a broader travel insurance product. The type of protection provided may vary depending on the type of policy taken out. A policy may simply cover the cost of the original tickets purchased or any unused portion, or the additional cost of purchasing new flights, such as new tickets for travel back to the UK.

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