Territorial marketing the Aéroports de la Côte d’Azur group and CRT Côte d’Azur intensify their cooperation

Published on 05/02/2016 at 18:53 • Updated on 08/02/2016 at 15:31

Fly2Cote d’Azur: The French Riviera destination is strengtheningits attractiveness to airlines. 

Press release / Issued 5 february

Photo Dominique Thillaud et David Lisnard

The agreement signed on 5 February 2016 by David Lisnard,Chairman of CRT Côte d'Azur, and Dominique Thillaud, Chairman of the Board of the Aéroports de la Côte d'Azur Group, offers airlines flying in and out of the airport partnerships to promote the French Riviera destination abroad.

Coordinated by the Côte d'Azur Regional Tourism Board (CRT) and the Aéroports de la Côte d'Azur Group, the Fly2Côte programme is a 3-way winning approach for airlines, the airport and the destination.  The airline invests in extending its network to the French Riviera; in return, the destination and the airport invest in promoting the airline to strengthen direct connectivity between the two territories.  An original approach binding aviation and tourism development on an international scale. 

On the French Riviera, air transport has a particularly powerful impact on the growth of tourism: 38% of foreign visitors to the destination come by plane using the Nice Côte d'Azur airport, France's second leading airport after Paris with 12 million passengers in 2015.  Based on this fact, the airport group and the CRT decided to propose a combined approach to support incoming airlines to promote tourism development, and more widely economic development, of the French Riviera, from Menton to Saint Tropez.

In cooperation with the main destinations (Antibes Juan-les-Pins,Cannes, Nice and Monaco) and professionals (Umih06, Union of Hoteliers Nice Côte d'Azur),  committed to an international promotion approach, the CRT has created a specific unit, endowed with a budget of € 200,000,60% of which is financed by the CRT and 40% by the airport and the destinations.

This budget is used, not as direct financial aid, but to support and co-finance specific communications plans launched by the airlines with the destination revolving around two themes: support to the opening of new direct services to the French Riviera and the setting up of medium- and long-term network development operations (North America,China and Russia)

David Lisnard adds: "There can be no economic development, let alone tourism development, without traffic.  The airport's aim is therefore to be a driving force for employment in our area. The French Riviera welcomes eleven million tourists each year, generating ten billion euros in turnover. Global competition is intense and the greater French Riviera, which represents 1% of international tourists in the world, must develop its accessibility, ensure the diversification of its markets and reflect the development of high potential feeder areas in the future, which include the US, China and Russia. This strategic alliance with the airport helps sustain strategic direct air routes whose profitability must be stimulated, and is part of the new dynamic of our territorial brand that CRT Côte d'Azur is working on.  I also welcome the progress made in terms of air routes for the summer 2016 season:  9 new destinations, allowing us to cover the whole of Europe. Every time we open a direct route to the French Riviera, the number of stays here increases. The CRT makes its contribution in this regard, as illustrated by the actions covered by this agreement.  We have already scheduled the launch of two operations in early 2016. The first with Delta Air Lines to support the maintenance of their New York / Nice flight from January to March.  The campaign, which starts on February 16, aims to support the marketing of the route through the winter.  The second, tostrengthen flights of the Belavia airline next summer between Minsk and Nice, with four weekly flights instead of three, and with additional capacity”.

According to Dominique Thillaud:"The Aéroports de la Côte d’Azur Group thus sustainably reasserts its anchored position at the heart of the French Riviera destination. On the basis of two observations that the existence of a direct air route has a multiplier effect on the growth of visitors to the destination served, but also a positive impact on the environment by reducing greenhouse gas emissions, it became clear that joining forces with CRT Côte d'Azur would leverage the power of our actions to the benefit of our Territory.  This approach is also supported by the Territorial Competititveness Contract, launched last June, whereby our Group offers airlines a reduction of its airport charges (*) for scheduled commercial aviation for 10 years, to the benefit of its Territory as well as current and future partner airlines".

(*) Airport charges for regular commercial aviation: landing, transit and parking of aircraft.

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