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Kutaisi-Next Best Destination for Arranging Cheap Flights to Europe

Published: June 11, 2012 | 11:15 am
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The COMMERCIAL TIMES

The largest low-budget airline company of the central and eastern Europe Wizz Air and the United Airport of Georgia signed the memorandum about collaboration at the Kutaisi International Airport on June 5.

The memorandum was signed by the Deputy Director of United Airport of Georgia of Development Department, Wizz Air Group Executive Cice-President and Wizz Air Ukraine Chairman John Stephenson.

According to Georgian President, entrance of such low-budget airlines this will give the local population an opportunity to have access to cheap flights to Europe.

One-way flight to Kiev would cost the citizens EUR 22. Wizz Air will start flights from September 27. The flights will be operated three times a week and the company will serve about 40 thousand passengers. Since September the price will be EUR 37. Kutaisi-Kiev-Cologne round-trip ticket price will start at EUR 200. Kutaisi-Kiev-Cologne, Kutaisi-Kiev-Venice round-trip ticket price starts at € 150. Kutaisi-Kiev-Katowice round-trip ticket price will start at EUR 100.

Georgian President criticized artificially boosted prices of Tbilisi and Batumi airports. “If they do not agree to decrease prices, people from Tbilisi and Batumi will choose flights from Kutaisi airport.”

Saakashvili talked about the importance of the entrance of the largest Hungarian airline company on Georgian market. According to the president such collaboration will increase the number of tourists and will promote creating new employment opportunities.

According to Vera Kobalia, the Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development of Georgia, this is a huge opportunity for Europeans to visit Georgia and also for Georgians living abroad to come back to their country more frequently. “Furthermore, the entrance of the airline company Wizz Air will provide the opportunity for the population of Georgia, for students to go to Europe for studies, vacations and of course it will promote the business development,” noted Kobalia.

“This contract gives us an opportunity to reach a new market. Our ticket price will be around GEL 50. The price indicates the importance of this project,” said the Executive Vice-President of Wizz Air Group.

Georgian side has been negotiating with Wizz Air for a year. The company got first interested in Georgian market at the Berlin Exhibition. Nowadays, the airline company has operating base in 15 countries of the World.
UNStudio’s design for the new Kutaisi Airport – which will serve domestic and international flights for use by international diplomats, national politicians and for tourism – incorporates both Georgia’s historic landscape and its architecture. The architecture of the terminal refers to a pavilion; a gateway, in which a clear structural layout creates an all-encompassing and protective volume. The volume is structured around a central exterior space which is used for departing passengers. The transparent space around this central point is designed to ensure that flows of passengers are smooth and that departure and arrival flows do not coincide.

The 4,000 m2 terminal building will house a central arrivals hall, a check-in area with lounge, cafe and car rental facilities, three gates for departure with retail, cafes, a CIP lounge area and exterior garden, an arrival area with customs and offices for the border police and an administration area with staff rooms and press conference facilities.

The 55m high, 300 m2 Air Traffic Control Tower is designed to complement the design of the terminal. The traffic control cabin on the top level forms the focal point of the tower, with a spacious and comfortable interior ensuring a workspace of optimal concentration. 1,500 m2 of supporting office spaces are housed in a nearby building.

 

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