Residents of Essex who own a second home in the Algarve are looking forward to the launch of flights to Faro airport from Southend International.

Daily Easyjet flights to the sunshine destination begin on 5th April, with the frequency increasing as the summer season begins.

While residents of Essex and East London now have an additional easy travel option to the Portuguese city, it is in fact at the expense of Easyjet’s Stansted to Faro service, which has now been cancelled. Many holiday homeowners in the Eastern Counties have greeted this move with dismay. These travellers now only have the option of Ryanair from Stansted, or a long drive to an alternative airport.

The move of this route is part of the opening of Easyjet’s new base at Southend airport, which will also serve other popular holiday destinations such as Ibiza and Malaga.

The airport is well positioned for the imminent London Olympics, with frequent trains taking passengers to Stratford in 44 minutes. Unfortunately, it is less handy for those in Norfolk and Suffolk, used to a convenient drive down to Stansted.

British air travellers received a blow on Wednesday when a rise in air passenger duty was announced in the Budget. Ben Taylor, author of the and resident in the Algarve, said: “My wife and I both fly regularly between the UK and Portugal on business. Although the rise isn’t enormous in itself, it does mount up across multiple trips – as do the airfares and supplementary charges which themselves have been steadily rising in the three years we’ve been making the journey. It’s depressing that the UK’s fondness for stealth taxes can still affect us after we’ve moved to another country. You would think the current government would wish to distance themselves from the term ‘rip off Britain’ which seems to be internationally known.”

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