(February 22, 2018) Icelandair announced Thursday that the airline is increasing its nonstop Tampa-Reykjavik service from twice a week to four times weekly beginning in September 2018. The route, which launched at Tampa International Airport in September 2017, is expected to be a popular draw for Tampa Bay area travelers looking to visit Europe as well as adding to the increasing number of international visitors to the region.
“We’ve been seeing a great demand for these flights in the Tampa Bay area market and we’re thrilled to not only increase the service but double the service between Tampa and Reykjavik,” said Michael Raucheisen, Marketing and PR Manager for Icelandair North America. “We expect this to be a great partnership for years to come.”
The announcement comes as Tampa International Airport continues to hit record passenger numbers and focuses on increasing international air service. Last year alone, TPA saw a nearly 5 percent growth in international passengers, and it has seen more than 100 percent growth in international traffic since it began aggressively targeting key international markets seven years ago.
Icelandair’s current two weekly flights to and from Reykjavik create a direct economic impact of $14.2 million annually and create 259 jobs in the Tampa Bay region. The two extra weekly Icelandair flights will add another $14.2 million for a total economic impact of $28.4 million a year.
The increased service comes at a time when the region is already seeing outstanding tourism numbers, bringing in visitors from all over the world – including from Europe on Icelandair – to some of the world’s top-ranked beaches and attractions. TPA tourism partners Visit Tampa Bay and Visit St. Pete-Clearwater have played a critical role in supporting the airport’s air service development efforts, particularly in key European and Latin American markets.
“The Western European and Scandinavian regions are a key emerging market for us due to their robust economies and propensity to travel,” said Patrick Harrison, Chief Marketing Officer for Visit Tampa Bay. “Many have vacationed to Florida in the past but are looking for new experiences and destinations in the state.”
Visit Tampa Bay and Visit St. Pete-Clearwater continue to work on building relationships with tourism agencies and travel bureaus overseas, and that includes attracting new airlines such as Icelandair to TPA.
“Our five-year history with Icelandair proves we were sowing these seeds long before a flight came to light,” Visit St. Pete-Clearwater CEO David Downing said. “But we always knew the potential for this flight to play into our larger strategy of growing our largest intentional feeder markets in the UK and Europe and we will realize that potential in the months and years to come.”
To book a flight on Icelandair, visit www.icelandair.us.