The Russian cities of Moscow and St Petersburg have started to be served by Wizz Air UK from Luton airport.

The UK arm of the Hungarian budget airline claims to be the only British carrier directly connecting the London area to St Petersburg.

Wizz Air announced the daily flights in July with one-way fares starting at £25.99.

The expansion means that it has become the largest airline operating from Luton airport with a network of 63 routes.

Airport chief commercial officer Jonathan Pollard said: “We’re really excited to be launching these two fabulous destinations, making Russia the 44th country to be connected with London Luton airport.

“I’m very confident that they will prove a big success with our passengers and we remain grateful to Wizz Air for continuing to widen their choice of destinations available here at the airport.”

Wizz Air UK managing director Owain Jones added: “We are thrilled to offer our UK passengers the opportunity to experience Russia’s major cities.

“Those looking to immerse themselves in the rich history and culture of Moscow and St Petersburg need look no further, as our direct, low-fare flights make these cities more accessible than ever.