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Tuesday, 29 July 2014

Flybe Secures Partnership With World's Largest Student Travel Booking Agency

  Belfast student Clare Minne helps Flybe announce the airline’s partnership deal with STA Travel, the world’s largest student and youth travel company, at its store in Botanic Avenue.  Also in the picture is Flybe Regional Sales Manager Ken Harrower and STA Travel Expert Joseph Toner.

Flybe, Europe’s largest regional airline, is delighted to announce a landmark deal with STA Travel confirming its status as the ‘Preferred Partner for Student and Youth Travel’ which will see a range of affordable seat fares offered for sale across Flybe’s extensive 180+ route network to STA Travel’s customer base.

STA Travel is the world’s largest student and youth travel company, operating in over 63 countries including Northern Ireland, and has more than 230 retail stores globally in addition to its web booking engine that offers 24/7 global travel help. It has a high profile through a number of promotional tools including the wide use of social media channels, a database of more than 2.4 million and knowledgeable in-store travel experts who provide peer-to-peer advice to customers.

This, with a product range that matches the price and performance expectations of its customers and weekly ‘hot deals’ displayed across all 50 of STA Travel’s UK stores, means that Flybe will be afforded the benefit of high prominence within this relatively untapped and hugely active travel sector.

Commenting on the new partnership, Flybe’s Chief Commercial Officer, Paul Simmons said:
 “The global student and youth travel market offers enormous potential and we are delighted to have secured a presence into this fast growing sector of the travelling public through our new preferred partnership relationship with STA Travel. Customers will have access to an extensive selection of dynamic fares across Flybe’s network that includes routes offered by our two franchise partners, Loganair and Stobart Air.

“Our regional sales team is looking forward to supporting this partnership by working closely with STA Travel’s own extensive retail network.

“In this exciting fast-moving sector, and with a passenger commitment of being ‘the fastest way from A to Flybe’, we greatly look forward to working with our new partners at STA Travel and to becoming the preferred regional airline of choice for millions of additional young travellers.”

Tim Fryer, STA Travel’s UK Product and Marketing Director, added: “We are delighted to be working closely with Flybe. The new partnership will give our travel-savvy customers even more choice when it comes to planning their perfect itinerary to start their adventure.”

The World In Pictures - Siobhain Danaher Exhibition

Siobhain Danaher has traveled over 58,200 air miles to bring her stunning travel photography exhibition to George Best Belfast City Airport.View it in arrivals from August 3rd 2014.

What is your exhibition about?

Clouds and Sky Mont Blanc Italy 
My Travel Photography Exhibition gives an insight into the beauty of many destinations around the world and the vibrant and welcoming people that call these places home.
The world is a magical place and I have been very fortunate that my travels have taken me form the heights of the Himalayan Kingdom of Bhutan to the winding canals of Venice.
This exhibition is a collection of images from those travels including Bhutan, Cuba, India, New York, Venice and Vietnam. 
This exhibition for me is a realisation of my dream of becoming a Travel Photographer which I have been working towards over the past 4 years.
I would like to think my exhibition will inspire others to travel, create art and pursue their own dreams, no matter how big or small.

What is your favourite picture and why?

Havana Cuba
 My favourite image is  - Aerial view - Havana, Cuba.

This image was taken in my favourite destination and one I will return to someday - Cuba.
A mixture of raw beauty and unique sights, sounds and aromas makes this a most wonderful place to photograph.
Cuban people are incredibly welcoming and even though they may not appear wealthy in monetary terms, they possess a wealth of spirit that is both admirable and humbling.
As with all photographs they tend to jog our memory of times gone by and some images will stay in our memory longer than others. This is by far by most favourite memory as it was shot as I took my first steps to becoming a Travel Photographer.
I was in Cuba to attend Lorne Resnick's Travel Photography workshop and captured this image taken on my first day as I leaned out of the balcony of my 'Casa Particular' (Cuba's equivalent to a B&B).
The scene was set as I watched Cubans go about their daily business, the classic blue car in the background, the deteriorated street, the people walking by unaware of the captivated audience above them.
I waited patiently as the sun moved to align the shadows and just as this happened the two ladies walking by carrying their shopping entered the image which became the focal point of the image.

Describe the benefits of having your exhibition displayed in an airport?

Bhutanese Dancers
Displaying my exhibition in an airport has many benefits.
It enables me to reach a wide audience and in most cases an audience that shares the same love of travel as I do.
Most people have some spare time at airports, whether waiting for their own flights or waiting for loved ones to arrive and my exhibition gives them an opportunity to see the sights of the world and maybe take some inspiration to book their next adventure.
The airport is the perfect place to display my exhibition as it is through airports that most journeys to the world of travel begin.

Why should people stop and take a look in arrivals?

I hope people will stop to view my exhibition as one of my aims is to inspire people to travel more, to experience the beauty of the world we all inhabit and to see how cultures as different as they may seem are also very much the same.
I sincerely hope viewers in George Best Belfast City Airport enjoy my exhibition as much as I have enjoyed creating it.

Find out more about Siobhain Danaher 

Monday, 14 July 2014

Ten things you only do at the airport

1.   Splash out at World Duty Free, so many bargains and tax savings it's hard to resist that perfume, make-up, the nail polish oh and the Ray Bans.
2.   Look out for a celeb! Loads of famous faces have passed through Belfast City Airport from Jamie Dornan to Little Mix.
3.   Buy more books than you can possibly read on holiday at WH Smith. From the latest Robert Galbraith (aka JK Rowling) to Clive Cussler, you've got to get your hands on those crisp new pages.
4.   Have a pint and a full Ulster Fry before your flight, even if it’s early, fuel for the journey.
5.   Stock up on mini toiletry products at Boots because you can’t possible fit the normal size product in your hand luggage. Then you remember you've forgotten after-sun, insect repellent and party feet.
6.   Walk around with a newly purchased Toblerone and a tin of short bread. You’re buying it as a gift, a gift for yourself! 
7.   You've had this holiday booked for months but you haven't got round to changing your money yet. It's a good thing Travelex has some of the best currency exchange rates on the market. 
8.   Use the free Wi-Fi to look up holiday phrases. You can't learn the whole language in 50 mins but you can master the basics  uno más amigo bebida (one more drink please)!
9.  Down a bottle of water quickly (to stay hydrated) then need the loo as soon as you step on the plane.  
10.        Show off you mismatching socks. The socks looked to be the same when you put them on this morning but when asked to remove your shoes at security you discovered they are in fact completely different.

Friday, 20 June 2014


Flybe, the largest airline operating out of George Best Belfast City Airport has paid a unique tribute to the 1974 British and Irish Lions Squad.
The event coincided with the 40th Anniversary reunion of the Squad organised by the Wooden Spoon Children’s Charity of which Willie-John McBride is currently President. The legendary players who were flown in from Scotland, England and Wales by Flybe, lined up to watch the unveiling and included Fran Cotton, Alan Morley, JPR Williams, Phil Bennett, Andy Irvine, Alan Old, Roger Uttley, Gareth Edwards, JJ Williams, Phil Bennett and Billy Steele. The Irish stars comprised Willie-John McBride, Syd Millar, Mike Gibson, Fergus Slattery, Tom Grace, Jonny Moloney, Stewart McKinney and Dick Milliken.
“The Invincibles”, a specially named Q400 aircraft, has been unveiled in the presence of the squad members including team captain Willie-John McBride, by Fred Kochak, Flybe Routes Director accompanied by Andrea Hayes, Flybe’s Regional Manager North.

Fred Kochak explains, “In May 1974 a squad of 34 rugby players from Ireland, Scotland, England and Wales formed the British and Irish Lions Squad to travel to South Africa. They were to play against a country not beaten in 78 years. When they returned in July 1974, having won 21 of their 22 matches and drawing the other, they returned as “The Invincibles” and are widely regarded as the greatest northern hemisphere side of all time. Their passion, commitment and determination is legendary and we are delighted to make our own unique tribute to what they achieved and the values they continue to represent.

Dedicating an aircraft to such sporting icons is our special way of saying congratulations and a thank you to “The Invincibles”. As she flies across the Flybe route network, we hope that “The Invincibles” will act as an inspiration to others”.

From today the Flybe Q400 OE will feature a life size image of Willie-John McBride framed within a set of rugby posts. Below the cross bar are listed the 34 names of the full 1974 British and Irish Lions Squad. Alongside the image is the new name of the aircraft, “The Invincibles”.

Adds Mr Kochak, “The Invincibles celebrate their 40th anniversary today and Flybe recently marked its 30th year operating out of George Belfast Belfast City Airport. Two very different milestones but both demonstrating a strong legacy of achievement and commitment which is assured well into the future, both here and throughout the rest of the UK.”

Flybe has previously named five other aircraft to honour local sporting heroes – George Best and Mary Peters in Belfast, Kevin Keegan in Newcastle, Matt le Tissier in Southampton and Adam Stansfield in Exeter.

Wednesday, 21 May 2014

Enjoy gadgets during take-off and landing

You can now use electronic devices all the way through flights as long as they are set to 'Flight Safe' mode.

The recent change to the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) regulation that covers the use of portable gadgets on flights means you can now play games, read an e-book or check your saved emails from tablets and phones during take-off and landing.

The only exceptions are laptops, DVD players and Bluetooth accessories, which can be used during boarding and during your flight, but need to be stowed away for taxi, take-off and landing.

Always be aware of your airlines' individuals guidelines. Ask cabin crew if you are unsure. Wi-Fi, text and phone call functions are not permitted.

Whenever you are using a device make sure they are carefully secured in your hand or pocket and that headphones do not obstruct the aisle.

Tuesday, 20 May 2014

Queen's Baton Arrives In NI

The Queen's Baton was presented to Northern Ireland's First Minister and Deputy First Minister on the steps of Stormont by Dame Mary Peters on Tuesday.

Our adopted schools Knocknagoney PS, St Joseph 's PS & Mitchell House joined St Ita's in passing the Queen's Baton down the Stormont hill.

The baton has, so far, traversed the world as it visits the Commonwealth countries ahead of the opening of Glasgow 2014 on 23 July.

GRAHAM Facilities Management secures £2m contract with Belfast City Airport

George Best Belfast City Airport has awarded GRAHAM Facilities Management with a substantial £2 million contract to last three years.

The contract will see a team of 22 GRAHAM members of staff provide a mix of services including grounds maintenance, cleaning, energy management and electrical and mechanical services.

Speaking on behalf of Belfast City Airport, Capital Projects and Engineering Manager, Chris
Horner, said: “The airport welcomed over 2.5 million passengers in 2013 and with new routes to London City and Doncaster-Sheffield recently announced it is vital that the facilities are maintained to support the smooth running of our operations and accommodate future growth.

“The airport supports the on-site employment of around 1,200 in the airport and provides contracts to around 40 local businesses.

“GRAHAM Facilities Management has an impressive skill set spanning both hard and soft services and we look forward to working with the team as they help us to retain our excellent customer satisfaction levels.”

Development and Technical Director of GRAHAM Asset Management, Gareth Smyth, said: “GRAHAM Facilities Management has worked hard to build on its strong reputation as a capable and reliable provider for all facilities management and maintenance services.

“By drawing upon our innovative service delivery models we are able to offer the benefits of a one stop solution shared ultimately with our clients, such as Belfast City Airport, through continuous improvement and cost reduction.”

For more information about the facilities and amenities available at Belfast City Airport please visit

Queries can also be directed to the airport’s social media channels: