Return tickets on a direct weekly winter flight from Scotland to Palma would cost between 260 and 300 pounds, aviation experts told the Bulletin yesterday.In response to the deluge of emails and letters the newspaper has received all winter, especially over the past few days, regarding the lack of winter flights, in particular from Scotland from where there are no direct connections, the Bulletin yesterday investigated the financial viability of operating a weekly winter return flight in November, December and January, for example.
First thing passengers have to take into account is that Edinburgh or Glasgow are about 45 minutes extra flying time further than Gatwick, for example, and that puts operating costs up.
However, the Bulletin was given a ball park figure for putting a 180-seater Boeing 737 in the air and that is around 4,000 pounds per hour.
Palma to Edinburgh flying time is around 2.45 hours, so that is 12,000 pounds to put the plane in the sky, fuelled and crewed. So, a return flight would cost an operator around 30,000 pounds.
Obviously, the more seats sold, the cheaper the tickets would be, but on an occupancy of around 70 percent, and allowing for fluctuating fuel and operating costs, a round trip would cost between 260 and 300 pounds.
We are aware that people are flying from Scotland to Palma via Barcelona or other connecting airports, but this takes extra time.
What the paper cost yesterday was a direct return flight.
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