SkyWork Airlines returns to London City

A carrier based in Switzerland, SkyWork Airlines, has re-introduced a service between London City Airport and the Swiss capital, Bern. The route, described by the airline’s chief, Tomislav Lang, as a “real alternative” to flying to Zurich and Basel, offers quick access to the ski resorts of Champéry, Adelboden, and Grindelwald.

SkyWork, with its fleet of six aircraft, is one of the larger airlines operating out of Bern Airport. The carrier had previously specialised in routes to Northern Europe and the Balearic Islands, but an expansion to SkyWorks’s schedules, believed to be the largest in Bern Airport’s history, will add flights to Amsterdam, Madrid, and Budapest from October 2011.

The London City service, SkyWork’s only route to the UK, operates six times a week, on every day except Saturday. However, the flight will not reach full capacity until later this year, when the number of flights between Bern and the English capital is boosted to eleven rotations per week. British travellers will then be able to enjoy day trips to the Swiss city.

London City’s commercial chief, Matthew Hall, said that the airport would be “working closely” with SkyWork to “develop the relationship further”. Mr. Hall referred to the 28-year-old airline as an “experienced aviator”. SkyWork’s mettle will be put to the test quickly, however, as the airline will be forced to compete with British Airways and Swiss International Airlines for passengers travelling to Switzerland. The two flag-carriers have enjoyed a monopoly on Bern-bound passengers in the recent past, as they offered the only two routes to Switzerland from London City: Zurich and Geneva.

Currently, SkyWork’s planes depart from the Docklands hub in the evening, at 19.55. Tickets are priced between £113 and £157 (each way) for travel in April.

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