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Flybe takes to the skies again - here's how the airline stacks up in terms of price and rewards

Flybe has begun flying again under new ownership. The regional airline relaunched this month after collapsing in March 2020 at the start of the pandemic. It will now operate the majority of its flights from Birmingham and Belfast, as well as offering selected routes from London Heathrow.

We assess how the new airline stacks up against its competitors in terms of price and rewards - though before booking you should always compare prices elsewhere first. See our Cheap Flights guide for help on how to bag cheap scheduled and charter flights. 

How Flybe compares on price

Flybe initially made its return on 13 April, with a route between Birmingham and Belfast City, flying four times daily, with one-way tickets available for £34.99.

In the table below, we look at the average cost of a return ticket (over a three-week period) with Flybe for a four-day trip in June, August and October and compare prices with airlines operating the same routes. The table shows Flybe offers customers some of the cheapest fares on select routes, though be mindful that flight prices constantly change based on demand.  

For example, Flybe's flights between Birmingham and Amsterdam are up to £60 cheaper in each month we checked when compared with Jet2 and KLM.  However, Flybe is more  expensive than British Airways and KLM when flying between Heathrow and Amsterdam (see table below).

How Flybe compares with other airlines

Route Travel Date Flybe (1) Competitors

 

 

 

 

 

 

Birmingham to Belfast City

 

June

 

£63.31

£79.84 (Aer Lingus) (2)
£64.65 (EasyJet)

 

August

 

£63.31

£79.84 (Aer Lingus) (2)
£58.65 (EasyJet)

 

October

 

£69.98

£95.84 (Aer Lingus) (2)
£55.98 (EasyJet)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Birmingham to Amsterdam

 

June

 

£74.75

£131.40 (Jet2)
£110.41 (KLM)

 

August

 

£80.75

£142.20 (Jet2)
£124.74 (KLM)

 

October

 

£88.49

£129.00 (Jet2)
£125.41 (KLM)

 

 

Birmingham to Edinburgh

June N/A £58.98 (EasyJet)
August £63.31 £63.98 (EasyJet)
October £69.98 £59.98 (EasyJet)

 

 

Birmingham to Glasgow

June N/A £53.98 (EasyJet)
August £63.31 £64.31 (EasyJet)
October £69.98 £51.88 (EasyJet)

 

 

Birmingham to Aberdeen

June N/A £166.03 (Loganair)
August £313.31 £141.86 (Loganair)
October £103.98 £130.77 (Loganair)

 

 

 

 

 

 

London Heathrow to Amsterdam

 

June

 

£123.42

£96.4 (British Airways) (2)
£90.80 (KLM)

 

August

 

£121.08

£98.14 (British Airways) (2)
£94.47 (KLM)

 

October

 

£127.75

TABLE_CELL_STYLE

£102.14 (British Airways) (2)

TABLE_CELL_STYLE

£115.80 (KLM)

 

 

 

 

 

 

London Heathrow to Belfast City

 

June

 

£88.31

£91.27 (British Airways) (2)
£282.81 (Aer Lingus) (2)

 

August

 

£88.31

£98.60 (British Airways) (2)
£83.27 (Aer Lingus) (2)

 

October

 

£98.98

TABLE_CELL_STYLE

£83.27 (British Airways) (2)

TABLE_CELL_STYLE

£141.25 (Aer Lingus) (2)

Average return prices based on the cheapest fare available directly via the airlines' own websites, as sourced each Wednesday over a three-week period in April. (1) Can't use American Express as a payment method. (2) Avios and British Airways Executive Club Tier Points collected. (3) To and from the same airports bar Easyjet, which flies to Belfast International as opposed to Belfast City.

But it's not just price you need to factor in, as Flybe has two major drawbacks

If you're a frequent traveller or an avid American Express user you may want to think twice before booking with Flybe, that's because:

  • You can't pay for Flybe flights with American Express (Amex). Amex provides some of the best cashback, rewards and airline branded credit cards. Customers can often get extra reward points for purchasing holidays, flights and other travel necessities using these cards but you can't use them with Flybe - it will only accept payment via Mastercard and Visa debit and credit cards.

    You can view the Best Cashback and Reward Credit Cards plus a breakdown on the top Airline Credit Cards.
  • You also can't collect airmiles with Flybe. Flybe has confirmed to us that it has no plans to launch its own frequent flyer programme. This means you wont be able to collect loyalty points and rewards.

    So if you're already a member of the Aer Lingus Frequent Flyer Programme, the British Airways Executive Club or EasyJet Plus it may make more sense to continue flying with them to take advantage of member discounts, discounted seat selection and complimentary baggage policies. But, ultimately if you're after value for money, Flybe looks to be a viable option in an already crowded market. 

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