A MAJOR holiday operator will make a long-awaited return to Teesside Airport - with the first flights to a sunny destination taking off next week.

TUI will restart operations from the airport as the first service to Palma in Majorca departs next Tuesday (May 10) for the first time in almost a decade.

The operator, which also flies out of Newcastle Airport, stopped flying into Teesside after axing its routes back in 2013, when the airport was under different management.

Read more: What it's like to work at Teesside Airport's fire station on International Firefighters Day

But last night, it emerged the route had been a "sell-out" success as the first two flights, departing on May 10 and May 17, appeared to have been removed from sale.

Darlington and Stockton Times: The flights appear to be sold out until May 24 Picture: SCREENGRABThe flights appear to be sold out until May 24 Picture: SCREENGRAB

With flights from £82 per person one way, the holiday operator is hoping to compete with other airlines including Ryanair and Balkan Holidays.

Operating every Tuesday, the service will run once a week until the end of the summer season, finishing on October 18.

Read more: Corendon Airlines launches flights from Newcastle airport

Speaking to The Northern Echo, bosses said they were looking forward to the return of the white and blue aircraft, most recognisable by the red 'TUI smile' on its tail.

The Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen said: “We’re looking forward to seeing TUI return to Teesside next week for the first time in a decade, better yet that it's full of passengers.

Darlington and Stockton Times: A TUI aircraft Picture: NORTHERN ECHOA TUI aircraft Picture: NORTHERN ECHO

"Seeing our airport busy and being used by local people to head off on their holidays to Majorca just shows how far we have come.

“We are ready for our best summer yet thanks to the multimillion-pound terminal redevelopment making it quicker and easier than ever before to fly from Teesside. 

“With a growing number of holiday flights, full capacity, we can’t wait to welcome many more passengers for a well-deserved break away this summer after a tough couple of years.”

The return of TUI was first announced back in 2020 when routes to Palma and Antalya in Turkey were named by the airline.

However, earlier this year Teesside Airport appeared to confirm routes to Antalya would not be going ahead for the summer schedule and that they would return in 2023.

Richard Sofer, Commercial & Business Development Director at TUI, previously said: “We know how important regional flying is to our customers and we’re really excited to be adding Teesside back to our UK airport offering from summer 2022."


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