Wizz Air (W6, Budapest) Hungarian budget carrier Wizz Air (W6, Budapest) has confirmed that it has applied for an Air Operator's Certificate (AOC) and Operating License (OL) from the United Kingdom's Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). Newly-established company Wizz Air UK (London Luton) plans to begin UK operations in March 2018.
"It is a natural, next-step in the development of our UK business and will bring additional investment and jobs to our UK base at London Luton," said Wizz Air's CEO, József Váradi. "The UK remains the single biggest travel market in Europe and we are currently the UK's 8th largest operator and this move is also part of our broader strategy to ensure that our UK operations are Brexit-ready."
Wizz Air UK will register several aircraft in the UK, to be based at London Luton, although how many was not specified. The airline currently operates 421 flights per week on forty routes originating in the UK. In the future, routes running out of the UK, but not operated by the new company, will continue under Wizz Air's Hungarian AOC.
Luton is Wizz Air's largest airport across its European network in terms of seat capacity, with 61,800 offered this week, or almost 10% of its total.
Other airlines are already considering contingency plans ahead of the UK's exit from the European Union in March 2019, although only easyJet (U2, London Luton) has so far made definitive action after it launched an Austria-based unit – easyJet Europe (Vienna) – earlier this year.