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Open skies agreement to mean 'more choice for holidaymakers'

26 January 2009 11:05

Open skies agreement to mean 'more choice for holidaymakers'

A new open skies agreement between the United States and the European Union will mean more choice and cheaper fares for holidaymakers, the Air Transport Users Council (AUC) has said.

Coming into effect at the end of March, the agreement means that any US or European carrier can fly any route to any American or European city.

James Fremantle, industry affairs manager for AUC, says that the liberalisation of the airline market will be good for consumers.

"There are cheaper air fares because there is more competition. It means that you have more choice of subject and airlines that are doing the routes, which ultimately means cheaper fares," he said.

British travellers are set to be the big winners with Heathrow Airport having to open up the transatlantic route to other airlines.

The Open Skies contract was completed in April 2007, and supporters of the agreement have welcomed the prospect of increased competition leading to cheaper travel for tourists on both sides of the Atlantic.