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Wizz Air offers 10,000 free tickets to fly Ukrainian refugees to UK

Wizz Air is to provide 10,000 free tickets to help Ukrainian refugees fly to the UK in support of the government’s ‘Homes for Ukraine’ visa scheme. 

People displaced from the country to the neighbouring countries of Bulgaria, Hungary, Poland, Romania and Slovakia will have access to flights as part of a joint initiative with charities.

The free tickets are available across 61 routes and include one hand luggage item and one checked-in luggage item per person. 

Travel will be available for a month from May 14 to June 15, with the first refugees due to arrive at Luton airport from Krakow and Warsaw in Poland on Saturday to be connected with their UK sponsors.

A statement from the budget carrier said: “The main aim of this initiative is to make free travel available to Ukrainian refugees during this time of crisis, as well as supporting the UK government’s Homes for Ukraine visa scheme by enabling Ukrainian refugees to resettle in the UK with their sponsors.”

More than 95,000 visas had been issued to Ukrainians under the scheme as of May 5 and 37,000 have already arrived in the UK.

Refugee support group Choose Love has also created an official website, where donors can contribute funds to add to the initial 10,000 free tickets, as well as provide support to refugees once they reach the UK.

The airline’s chief executive, Jozsef Varadi, said: “We hope that this initiative will help many Ukrainians reach a safe place in the UK soon.

“We have already seen great humanitarian efforts on the ground by our people across the network, and following our 100,000 free tickets offer to Ukrainian refugees in March and April, we wanted to continue to play our part in these efforts.”

Josie Naughton, co-founder and chief executive of Choose Love, added: “Air fares should never stand in the way of people being able to access safety.”

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