Maxjet Airways Inc., which had planned to begin low-fare service between Baltimore Washington International Airport and London's Stansted Airport this year, has decided instead to fly from Washington Dulles International Airport, where it is based.
The flights are scheduled to begin sometime this winter.
"After taking a hard look at it, I didn't think there was enough [demand for] international traffic out of BWI," Maxjet chief executive Gary R. Rogliano said yesterday.
There is another twist, too: Maxjet originally planned to ferry passengers across the Atlantic in three classes of service.
Now it is offering only business class, which the airline predicts will be a moneymaker even with today's high jet fuel prices.
Maxjet makes its debut Nov. 1 with a flight from New York's John F. Kennedy International to Stansted -- already a hub for low-fare European airlines -- 35 miles from London.
The Boeing 767 service, with 102 business-class seats, will operate every day except Saturday in each direction.
For flights leaving Nov. 1 and returning Nov. 8, Maxjet's Web site yesterday was quoting a round-trip fare of $1,492 between JFK and Stansted.
British Airways' lowest business-class fare yesterday -- for a round trip from JFK to London Heathrow -- was $7,109 for those dates, according to its Web site.
The Dulles-Stansted fares have not been set, but they probably will be "a bit higher" than the $1,492 JFK-Stansted fare "because the distance is a bit further," Rogliano said.
The six-day-a-week Dulles service will begin after Maxjet has received federal government approval to operate two additional jets, Rogliano said. "That could be in mid-January," he said.
Maxjet also is eyeing service between Stansted and other U.S. cities, including Boston, Orlando, Chicago and San Jose.
"A lot of that will depend on the demand from Stansted," Rogliano said. "Stansted is the biomed center of the U.K., so there should be a big demand to go to Boston and San Jose, which also have big biotech corridors."