Topic Author
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Sat Jan 15, 2005 7:28 pm

Not too many years ago, this airport was seved by many of our charter carriers like Britannia and Dan Air offered a very regular service. Now it seems that there are very few flights from the UK. Is there many flights into the airport from other European airports.

As the destination is a major place of pilgrimage, I cant understand why there are so few flights into the airport. I remember Dan Air 1-11s could always been seen there.
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RE: Lourdes/Tarbes

Sat Jan 15, 2005 9:40 pm

The only flight I can find into Lourdes is an internal flight from Paris Orly on a Fokker 100.
Topic Author
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RE: Lourdes/Tarbes

Sat Jan 15, 2005 10:36 pm

I suspected there were not too many flights into Lourdes these days. What about charter flights? It would be a shame if the airport was falling into dissuse.
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RE: Lourdes/Tarbes

Sun Jan 16, 2005 12:01 am

Most UK regional airports have 1 or 2 flights to Lourdes/Tarbes during the year. In the past, from NCL some flights to Lourdes have been operated using EAF 747s and SCY A300s.
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RE: Lourdes/Tarbes

Sun Jan 16, 2005 12:11 am

Lourdes was bidding for Ryanair service but lost out to nearby Pau.

Its main purpose as an airport is for religious charters to Lourdes and skiing in the nearby Pyrenees.

However almost all ski charters to the Pyrenees and Andorra these days seem to land in Toulouse (followed by a 3hr bus transfer) even though it is further away.

Perhaps it has something to do with weather conditions and airport facilities (the latter certainly being much better in Toulouse)
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RE: Lourdes/Tarbes

Sun Jan 16, 2005 1:02 am

I remember taking Ryanair from Luton to Lourdes in 1990 when I was 8. They served a full hot meal on board too!

I flew from Orly to Lourdes in 2001 on an AF A319. You got a chicken pie and a sweet cake-like thing and of course, full bar service. The flight was full both ways.
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RE: Lourdes/Tarbes

Sun Jan 16, 2005 8:53 am

I have a postcard of this airport into my collection showing 2 Pan Am 747 al Lourdes. Long time ago.
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RE: Lourdes/Tarbes

Sun Jan 16, 2005 9:38 am

I flew a couple of times to Lourdes in the late-'80s/early-'90s with British Airways--cannot remember what aircraft it was, but it wasn't small and it was packed.

Lourdes was bidding for Ryanair service but lost out to nearby Pau.

Biarritz too. Irish Nuns are regulars on the Stansted-Biarritz service too, although Pau does make more sense due to its proximity to Lourdes.

The only explanation I can think of regarding the decline in direct services from the UK to Lourdes might entail stating the obvious; religious following is on the wane in Britain (I don't mean to sound reactionary). That said, I know quite a number of people in London who have gone to Lourdes to help out in recent years, of whom several made it an annual commitment. Some of them fly to Biarritz with Ryanair, others Pau.



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RE: Lourdes/Tarbes

Sun Jan 16, 2005 10:11 pm

I have studies at the University de Pau back in 2001 and I had to fly from Pau to Paris CDG on a 737. I was the only commercial service I saw at the airport. There were like hourly flights to Orly and CDG. What is it like there now?
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RE: Lourdes/Tarbes

Sun Jan 16, 2005 11:03 pm

All the info you could want:



looks like the usual AF services plus a daily FR to STN plus holiday charters for the locals



80% of the activity of Tarbes-Lourdes-Pyrénées airport is charter, mostly brought by the pilgrimage to the worldwide renowned town of Lourdes.

Italy, Ireland, Belgium, Great Britain and Germany are traditionally the 5 largest markets (more than 70 % of the total flights).

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RE: Lourdes/Tarbes

Mon Jan 17, 2005 1:55 am

In 2003 the number of pax on UK-Lourdes was 34,338. In 1997 it was 47,222. So there is quite a decline which is presumably mainly due to the FR services to other airports in the region. There is still a large number of charters from Irish airports to Lourdes. Unfortunately I don't have any traffic figures. The charters tend to be at certain periods of the year, eg Easter, rather than spread out over the year.

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