SOUTHAMPTON-based airline Flybe has announced it will flying to a new destination later this year whilst existing routes will also be extended and increased.

The airline has announced it will be offering a daily service between Southampton and Hamburg starting in October.

It will be the first time the company has flown between the cruise-ship port cities which are both regarded a regional business hubs.

The route begins on on October 26 with one way fares beginning at just under £50.

The airline has also confirmed that routes from Southampton to Alicante, Malaga and Faro will be extended to operate through to early November to accommodate half-term travel.

All these flights will be operated by Flybe's 118-seat Embraer 195 jet aircraft.

Increased flights to Dublin will also operate during winter up to four times a day, and routes to regional France will also receive a winter boost with the addition of a twice weekly service to La Rochelle.

Fred Kochak, Flybe UK Routes' Director said: “As an airline dedicated to serving the country's regions, Flybe has responded to our passengers' calls in the Hampshire, West Sussex and Surrey areas to provide alternatives from their convenient, local airport at Eastleigh instead of the congested airports closer to London.

“Our new daily service to Hamburg is ideally timed in the evening, so businesspeople can take advantage of a full day's work in northern Germany. This new route, as well as our winter extensions to popular leisure destinations in Spain and France, reaffirms Flybe's commitment to providing a whole range of destinations in the UK, Channel Islands and continental Europe.

Adds Dave Lees, Southampton Airport Managing Director: “Hamburg is a city that has strong business links to Southampton. We know that there are growing cruise links between these two major European ports, and there are many aerospace and marine industry links in both regions.“