ABOVE: The Birmingham base will be easyJet’s ninth UK location.

The creation of a new three-aircraft easyJet base at Birmingham Airport (set to open in March 2024) will mark the airline’s first UK expansion since the pandemic.

Expected to create around 100 direct jobs and support 1200 more, the new base in the UK’s second-largest city – easyJet’s ninth UK location – will accommodate three 186-seat A320 aircraft. Cited as a move to “take advantage of key growth opportunities across [easyJet’s] network” and “capture the continued demand for travel”, easyJet predict the new Birmingham base will help fulfil its “busiest ever flying programme, flying around eight per cent more capacity than pre-pandemic”.

On 18 May, Johan Lundgren, CEO of easyJet, noted: “Having already served Birmingham for many years, the decision to open a base and grow at the airport now is testament to the strong demand we see”. In summer 2023, the airline predicts to fly over one million more seats and introduce 57 new routes, 23 of which will be from the UK.

EasyJet flights from Birmingham currently serve Amsterdam, Belfast, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Switzerland and France, and the carrier notes that holiday packages will also be available from the new Birmingham base.

Nick Barton, Chief Executive of Birmingham Airport, described easyJet’s investment as a “huge vote of confidence in the West Midlands”; adding that “basing three aircraft at BHX will create many more jobs for local people and many more options for customers”.

Birmingham Airport is currently the UK’s third largest airport outside London and the seventh largest overall, with around fifty airlines flying directly to 143 destinations. The airport estimates around 80% of its flights are for leisure, and is forecast to handle around 18 million passengers a year by 2033.