Airline NyxAir OÜ has been awarded the tender to serve Hiiumaa, Estonia's second-largest island, from the end of January 2023, the Transport Administration (Transpordiamet) has announced. NyxAir's bid stood at €4.3 million.
NyxAir will replace Lithuanian carrier Transaviabaltika on the route between Tallinn and Kärdla, Hiiumaa's capital.
NyxAir already operates the Tallinn-Kuressaare (Saaremaa) route, while the new service to Hiiumaa will be using a larger plane even than that required by the tender's terms, and so be able to carry more passengers.
Transport Board spokesperson Kati Tamtik said: "In recognizing NyxAir OÜ's bid as successful, a functioning flight service is guaranteed to Hiiumaa, plus as a bonus, the provided aeroplane is also larger, i.e. it has more seats than was required in the tender."
Tamtik noted that two lower bids were rejected and, while this may mean the tender award may be challenged, the goal to ensure an uninterrupted flight connection to Hiiumaa remains in place.
The new service starts on January 28, when Transaviabaltika's contract finishes.
The tender received three bids, with NyxAir's €4.3-million bid the highest, for the entire contract period.
The Tansport Administration found that the lower bids did not meet tender terms regarding uninterrupted services, including the capability of the aircraft listed in the bid to land at Kärdla's airport in a variety of runway conditions, including bad weather etc.
NyxAir has been servicing the Tallinn-Kuressaare route for almost exactly two years to the day.
Hiiumaa can also be reached by ferry, from Rohuküla.
Editor: Andrew Whyte