The tour operator, which serves Bulgaria, Croatia, and Slovenia began operating from EMA in 1984 with one flight a week to Bourgas in Bulgaria on the Black Sea Coast.
This makes Balkan one of EMA’s longest serving continuous passenger tour operators. In 1995, it introduced a second weekly flight and, in the early 2000s, the airline added a weekly winter ski flight.
Since its launch, Balkan Holidays has carried 165,000 passengers to and from EMA.
Although relatively small countries, the Balkans have a lot to offer all travellers seeking both popular holiday spots and hidden gems.
Now boasting modern luxury accommodation including big name brands such as Melia Hotels International and Barcelo Hotel Group, holidays in the Balkans are increasingly popular with East Midlands passengers. With beautiful beaches, stunning mountains and fascinating culture, destinations served from EMA by Balkan Holidays are often more affordable alternatives to the popular southern Mediterranean and mainland Europe, whether for summer beach holidays or winter ski. Bulgaria consistently tops the charts of ‘Best Value’ destinations according to the Post Office’s worldwide ‘Holiday Costs Barometer’.
Louise Newton (Head of Marketing for Balkan Holidays), says: “’I am so proud of the long-standing relationship between East Midlands Airport and Balkan Holidays. To fly continuously for the last 35 years from EMA is a huge achievement. We are fully committed to offering inexpensive ski and summer holidays guaranteeing smooth and easy travel, while avoiding the bigger, busier airports. Here’s to the next 35 years.”
Rachel Briody, East Midlands Airport’s Travel Trade & Leisure Development Manager, says: “The longevity of Balkan Holiday’s operation from EMA is testament to the fact that they understand their customers and offer holidays and breaks that appeal to people who choose to fly from this airport. We look forward to continuing our partnership with Balkan to offer enjoyable holidays in a beautiful part of the world at an affordable price.”
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