In the beginning everything went as planned. From the end of May, Lübeck Air’s ATR 72 took off every Saturday from the airport in Schleswig-Holstein towards Jersey. The non-stop flight from Lübeck to Saint Helier, the capital of the Channel Island, took two and a half hours.

But in early July everything changed. Since then, Lübeck Air no longer flies non-stop to Jersey, but with a stopover in Sonderburg. The airline at the north German airport is not taking on new passengers in the small Danish town. Rather, the ATR 72 sits idle on the runway for around ten minutes before accelerating again, taking off and setting course for its real destination, Saint Helier.

Complicated air transport agreements are to blame for the short stay in Denmark. A Lübeck Air spokeswoman explains that when the route was started, the company had approval for non-stop flights to Jersey. “After we had already flown the route for six weeks, our approval was revoked.”

When asked by aeroTELEGRAPH, the Office of the Director of Civil Aviation DCA, which is the authority responsible in Jersey, stated that the reason was not Brexit. Because the Channel Island is neither part of the EU nor the Kingdom and has to maintain individual agreements with states.

Jersey requires a flight to depart from the country where the airline operating the flight is based. And that is not legally the case with Lübeck Air. It is currently still a virtual airline. Although it has its own aircraft and crews, it flies under the Air Operator Certificate (AOC) of the Danish Air Alsie, based in Sønderborg.

The flights to Jersey are therefore legally operated by a Danish airline. However, those involved noticed this too late, so that Lübeck Air was able to fly from Germany without a stopover. The stop in Denmark has now been taken as a pragmatic solution in coordination with the authorities in Jersey, according to the spokeswoman for Lübeck Air.

However, the airline plans to change its legal status soon. In addition to the flight attendants, the airline is also deploying more and more of its own cockpit staff on its ATR 72. And next year she wants to obtain her own air operator certificate.

Then Lübeck Air Jersey can head directly again. She plans with the destination. “The destination is very well received by our passengers,” said the airline’s spokeswoman.

This article was written by Stefan Eiselin

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The original of this article “Authority forces German airline to land at provincial airport” comes from aeroTelegraph.