By RYAN TAYLOR
FLIGHT operator Loganair insists its service will not suffer when it withdraws some of its flights to the isles from its summer schedule.
The airline announced this week it would examine dropping off peak flights to Shetland, as well as Orkney and the Hebrides, over the next three months as it continues to find ways to battle against the rising cost of fuel.
It comes just weeks after the airline announced passengers would be forced to stump up an extra £4 for every flight – a measure introduced after the cost of oil rose to $135 a barrel.
The company insists only flights with low passenger numbers will be targeted.
But the move could cause concern among many in the tourism and business sector.
That has prompted the company to reassure passengers its service should not be badly effected.
A spokesman for the company said: “Given the current economic climate and the dramatic rise in fuel prices, we have taken the decision to consolidate some of our less busy flights for a few weeks over the summer period.
“During July, August and September we will identify individual flights with low occupation rates and contact those passengers who already have bookings and re-accommodate them on another flight the same day.
“We are acutely aware of our obligations to provide adequate services that meet the social and economic needs of our destinations and, as such, these minor changes will still leave adequate frequency and capacity to meet the demands of our travelling public.”
The spokesman said plans were at an early stage and no flights had as yet been identified for the chop.
“We are currently looking through the flights scheduled to identify low occupancy rates, but until that stage is completed we will not know what flights will be effected.
“Obviously we will make our findings known as soon as we have them available.”
The company says the measures being taken will be reviewed if the economic or passenger situation changes.