The UK two largest regional airlines are to co-operate to provide improved flight connections across the country and into other parts of Europe.

Flybe – to be rebranded as Virgin Connect next year – and Loganair are offering more than 100 new links through the new codeshare agreement.

Routes to and from Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Inverness and Manchester – the five main airports where the airlines’ networks meet – are included.

Passengers will no longer have to pay the multiple Air Passenger Duty charges they faced previously when buying separate tickets from Flybe and Loganair to build their own connecting itinerary.

Those travelling between destinations such as Sumburgh and Southampton, Inverness and Exeter, Stornoway and Birmingham, and Norwich and the Isle of Man all benefit from the renewed co-operation.

The pact means that travellers making a single booking for a connecting journey between Flybe and Loganair flights can check-in bags through to their final destination. They are being assured that they will be re-booked to their destination free of charge if weather conditions or other delays lead to missed connections.

Flybe sales, alliances and strategic partnerships director Alan Tune said: “The new codeshare agreement with our Loganair partner offers unrivalled connectivity between most of the main cities, islands and regions of the UK, and onwards to several key European cities.”   

Loganair managing director Jonathan Hinkles (pictured) said: “I’m incredibly pleased to be launching this new partnership with Flybe, which will bring tremendous benefits for customers through assured connections, reduced travel costs and convenient through check-in.

“The new codeshare agreement will link all of the communities that we’re proud to serve as Scotland’s airline with major destinations throughout the UK and Europe, and I’m sure that this will be fantastic news for UK tourism, business and by making it easier to visit friends and family.”

The Scottish government’s cabinet secretary for transport, infrastructure and connectivity, Michael Matheson, added: “Regional airlines provide essential links for Scottish businesses and our tourism sector, so this agreement between Loganair and Flybe is very welcome.

“It further enhances connectivity for the Highlands and Islands with the rest of the UK and provides seamless connections which will be a great benefit to passengers.”