Low cost carrier Jet2.com is to open its first London-area base at Stansted.

The Essex airport will become the company’s ninth UK base with flights due to start next spring.

Philip Meeson, chairman and chief executive of parent company Dart Group, said today: “We believe that London Stansted has great potential for our holiday business, serving the populations of north and east London and the east of England.

“In view of the significant investment which will be committed in the second half of this financial year to launch our London Stansted and recently announced Birmingham airport bases, it is likely that group operating profit will be slightly behind current market expectations despite the good trading performance achieved in the year to date.”

Giving an agm statement, Meeson described leisure travel bookings for this summer as “showing no signs of slowdown”.

He said: “Demand for our higher margin package holiday products continues to grow and as a result the number of package holiday customers, as a proportion of total departing customers, is also increasing.

“Though airline ticket yields and load factors are slightly lower than those achieved in summer 2015, this is against a backdrop of a 13% increase in seat capacity.

“Leisure Travel bookings for winter 2016/17 are satisfactory at this early stage.”

A further update is due to be provided when the company announces results for the six months to September 30 on November 17.