Yet another transatlantic all-business class airline has come forward. And this time it stands a better chance of getting off the ground.
US-based Maxjet has announced plans to fly from London Stansted to New York JFK from November 1. The service will operate daily (except Saturday) with a wide-bodied B767 configured with 102 roomy business class seats arranged six across (2-2-2) featuring 60 inches of legroom.
The flight will depart Stansted at 10.00 arriving JFK at 13.00. On the return, passengers will leave JFK at 18.30 to arrive Stansted at 07.00.
In-flight service will be to normal long-haul business class standards and passengers will have use of deluxe lounges at both ends of the route.
Tickets will cost from £1,278 return (including taxes and charges), which is substantially less than the prices charged by the big airlines out of Gatwick and Heathrow.
A spokesperson for Maxjet said that the airline hopes to appeal to firms based in London's Canary Wharf and the City. It will also prove convenient for travellers based in East Anglia and the Midlands from where there are convenient road links to Stansted. Maxjet also hopes to attract passengers flying into Stansted with the budget airlines, especially those coming from cities with no transatlantic service.
But, despite the keen prices, the carrier admits it will be "a challenge" filling 102 business class seats from Stansted. That's because Heathrow and Gatwick are convenient for a great many people and because flight frequency from these two airports is so much greater, plus there's competition from newcomer Eos (see below).
You can book flights with Maxjet from September 26. The airline can be contacted on 0800 0234300 or visit www.maxjet.com
* Maxjet faces direct competition from Business class-only carrier Eos, which plans to launch flights from New York to Stansted on November 1. Fares start at £3,500 return, but there is an introductory fare of £2,500.
Report by Alex McWhirter