WORLD ROUTES: TAROM Selects Luton as Alternative London Gateway

Romanian national carrier and SkyTeam alliance member, TAROM, has confirmed it will introduce scheduled flights to London Luton this winter and will transfer its recently launched twice weekly link to the UK capital from Iași from London Heathrow at the end of October. The Eastern European carrier launched the route at the end of April 2013 cutting frequencies on its London – Bucharest route to accommodate the new air service.

TAROM remains tight lipped over how it will now utilise these additional slots at London Heathrow although there are suggestions that a commercial deal may have already been agreed for them to be transferred to another airline as its schedule to Bucharest shows no signs of any frequency changes for the winter 2013/2014 season.

Apart from the switch of airports there will be little change to the flight. It will continue to operate on a twice weekly basis and will be flown using a 134-seat Boeing 737-300 every Tuesday and Saturday. There will also be a similar flight schedule with the aircraft departing the North East Romanian city in the evening and departing London later the same evening for an early morning arrival, albeit the schedule will be move around 90 minutes later.

Iași is one of the largest cities and municipalities in Romania and is located in the Moldavia region. It has traditionally been one of the leading centres of Romanian social, cultural, academic and artistic life. TAROM has previously offered a limited international schedule of flights from the city, but this year it introduced regular flights to Bologna, Rome and Turin alongside the London link.

“We are delighted that TAROM will shortly commence services. With convenient flight times, quality onboard service and competitive fares we are sure the Iasi flights with TAROM will be a great success,” said Glyn Jones, managing director, London Luton Airport.

According to UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) statistics, TAROM carried a total of 4,658 passengers on the Iași – London Heathrow route during the first four months of operation – 216 in April 2013; 1,306 in May 2013; 1,065 in June 2013 and 2,071 in July 2013.

Richard Maslen

Richard Maslen has travelled across the globe to report on developments in the aviation sector as airlines and airports have continued to evolve and…