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Finnair submits bid to provide Tartu-Helsinki flight route

Finnair plane.
Finnair plane. Source: Heikki Salonen/Finnair

An international tender to service an international flight from and to Tartu attracted just the one bidder, Finnish carrier Finnair, meaning the link will connect Tartu Airport to Helsinki.

The City of Tartu has announced that: "The detailed content of the submitted offer is has not been made public, as the city is just beginning to evaluate its compliance with requirements. The tender price can be disclosed once the evaluation of the offer's compliance and the negotiations with the tender provider [have been finalized]."

Mayor of Tartu Urmas Klaas (Reform) said: "We had hoped that more tenders would be submitted to the procurement, but the lack of these most likely reflects the present-day difficult situation in the aviation market and the economy more broadly."

Under the terms of the procurement, announced in September, the service must be provided for four years (to year-end 2027), 12 times per week (return) using aircraft with a minimum of 60 seats.

Flight connections between the Finnish capital and Estonia's second city had been interrupted in 2022, and in the meantime, the City of Tartu has analyzed from a legal perspective options for returning that service.

Consultations with various airlines yielded no immediate interest under current market conditions, which led to the establishment of a public service obligation on the most suitable international flight route for the city, flights which would receive subsidies from the City of Tartu's budget.

Based on a previously conducted economic study, Helsinki was chosen as the destination city.

Tartu's city government will, subject to the due diligence assessment, reveal when the planned flights will begin, once the procurement contract has been concluded.

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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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