THE number of flights from Southampton to Europe’s “energy capital” is to be increased, the Daily Echo can reveal.

Eastern Airways is boosting its service from Southampton Airport to Aberdeen to cater for demand from business travellers and offshore workers.

The UK’s second largest regional airline will increase scheduled flights to two every day from Monday to Thursday offering morning and afternoon departures.

The cities share a number of industry links – especially in the oil and marine sectors.

It follows news that the airline will start services from Southampton to Leeds Bradford on January 20, providing three flights each weekday in both directions, along with a Sunday service.

Weekday flights to Aberdeen will depart from Southampton at 8.20am and 4.05pm, arriving at 11am and 6.45pm respectively. Flights from Aberdeen will leave on weekdays at 8.40am and 3.30pm, landing in Southampton at 11.20am and 6.10pm.

Timings on Sunday services are also adjusted and will leave Southampton at 5.45pm, arriving in Aberdeen at 8.25pm. Flights from Aberdeen will depart at 2.45pm, arriving in Southampton at 5.15pm.

Kay Ryan, Eastern Airways commercial director, said: “By increasing the number of services to Aberdeen, this latest improvement allows south coast business travellers and oil industry workers the choice of a convenient morning flight or a late afternoon departure.”

Jan Halliday, Southampton Airport’s director of marketing & communications, added: “Air links between Southampton and Aberdeen are very important as they connect the two sea ports which have many well established industry links, especially in the oil and marine sectors. The addition of extra flights will be welcomed by the business community, as well as people in Aberdeen who can use the service to join the cruise ships departing from Southampton.”