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Isavia offering incentives to develop Icelandic regional traffic


Icelandic airport operator, Isavia, has revived its campaign to try and attract more traffic to the regional gateways of Akureyri (AEY) and Egilsstaðir (EGS).

The campaign will see the Icelandic route development fund offer a range of grants, subsidies and discounts to aircraft operators using the well-equipped, regional airports.

Isavia’s regonal airports’ CEO, Sigrún Björk Jakobsdóttir, says: “Iceland has so much to offer beyond Reykjavik and the well-known Golden Circle attractions.”

Not surprisingly, Iceland’s capital city airport, Keflavik on the outskirts of Reykjavik, handles the bulk of all traffic to the country, but Isavia is keen to develop more options for visitors.

AEY in the north and EGS in the east are two such options, and already have the tourism infrastructure to handle more visitors.

It is hoped that the route development subsidies will persuade airlines and travel companies to include both summer and winter flights to these relatively undiscovered, exciting regions.

Indeed, Isavia is offering a three-year discount scheme for the two airports based on a 100% discount on landing and passenger charges in Year 1, followed by a 90% discount in Year 2 and a 75% reduction in Year 3.

In addition, there is a subsidy of €18 per arriving passenger, paid to operators with a minimum of six flights, which combined with the airport discount incentives can total €25 per passenger.

Market development fund support of at least €60,000 can also be awarded to the operator, with the amount matched by the operator.

Known as the ‘capital of the north Iceland’ Akureyri Airport has a 2,400m long, 45m wide runway. The airport is ATC controlled and has LOC, ILS and GPS approaches to the highest standard.

Egilsstaðir Airport in east Iceland has a 2000m x 45m runway for takeoff and 1850m for landing. The airport is AFIS controlled and has ILS, RNAV and NDB approaches to the highest standards.

Both airports can accommodate aircraft up to the size of the Airbus 320, B757 and B737 and both have private, VIP jet facilities.

Isavia’s regonal airports’ CEO, Sigrún Björk Jakobsdóttir, says: “The airports at Akureyri and Egilsstaðir are well equipped for facilitating most narrow-bodied aircraft, with excellent passenger facilities that provide an easy, fast arrival and departure.

“By raising awareness of the generous grants, discounts and subsidies offered to aircraft landing at the regional airports in the north and east of Iceland we hope to attract more business.

“We want tour operators to create holiday itineraries in these regions and we’d also like to see flights available for the independent and business travellers and also for the residents of the area – the alternative can be an eight-hour drive from Reykjavik airport to East Iceland.”

The Icelandic Route Development Fund can grant up to €1.5 million each year until 2023.  The fund is open for application.

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