North-east air links have suffered a massive blow after German flagship carrier Lufthansa axed its flights from Aberdeen to Frankfurt.
The twice-daily flights from Aberdeen– there were three a day before the oil price slump – will end on March 25, with the airline saying the route is no longer commercially viable.
It means Aberdeen International Airport (AIA) has lost a key link as these flights are the only ones connecting the region directly with Germany, an important tourism market, while business and leisure passengers are losing access to global connections through one of Europe’s biggest aviation hubs at Frankfurt.
AIA managing director Carol Benzie said it was “extremely disappointing”.
She added: “We are highly committed to strengthening our route network and will be endeavouring to explore all possible alternative connectivity options into Germany for the future.”
Chris Foy, chief executive of tourism body VisitAberdeenshire, said Germany would continue to be an important market for inbound tourism, adding: “Visit Aberdeenshire will continue to work closely with Aberdeen International Airport and airlines to ensure the North-east of Scotland remains accessible to key international markets.”
A spokesman for Lufthansa, which launched the flights in 2011, said: “Despite substantial sales efforts this route was found to be commercially not viable.”
Passengers booked on flights after March 25 will be rebooked on alternative services, he said.