21 October, 2023

Jet2 pioneers a new approach to in-flight retail with new mega centre.

The Retail Operations Centre is the first of its kind in the UK, as no other UK airline has taken its in-flight retail operations in-house like this.
The UK's leading holiday airline, Jet2 has officially opened a multi-million pound Retail Operations Centre, the first centre of its kind in the UK aviation industry, which aims to set new standards for customer-first service, efficiency and security.

During Summer 22, airlines faced supplier disruption affecting in-flight retail services. Consequently, Jet2 took the decision to take control over its most critical in-flight retail operations, with the new centre developed to create a strong foundation to deliver its award-winning customer service as well as drive growth.

The 150,000-square-foot facility, located in Middlewich, Cheshire, will act as a centre for Jet2.com to stock, manage and distribute millions of in-flight retail products for customers to enjoy on their well-deserved leisure flights. The products being managed include drinks and non-perishable food that can either be pre-ordered or which feature in the airline’s in-flight menu, as well as products that can be bought from the onboard shop, such as fragrances, beauty products, gifts and duty-free.

The Retail Operations Centre is the first of its kind in the UK, as no other UK airline has taken its in-flight retail operations in-house like this. During a typical year, it is expected that more than 25 million items will flow through the centre to be loaded onto the company’s growing fleet of aircraft.

Each day, items will be securely stored, packed and loaded onto thousands of bar carts, with each bar cart being securely screened in just six minutes by passing through one of four Cart X-ray scanners that have been installed at the centre. Bar carts will then be distributed to Jet2.com’s UK airport bases by a fleet of Jet2.com and Jet2holidays branded trailers.

Given the nature of the operation, the Retail Operations Centre has been through a strict security process to ensure that it complies with relevant regulations and has been approved by the UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA).

Steve Heapy, CEO of Jet2 and Jet2holidays said: “Industry-leading customer service is a critical driver of our continued success, so we are absolutely delighted to be applying that to our in-flight retail operation. The opening of this multi-million pound Retail Operations Centre is a first for UK aviation and we know that this pioneering step will provide the very best service for our customers.”

He added: “This innovation represents a material investment in our operation and an enormous amount of work has gone into developing a world-class and industry-leading facility. The opening has created hundreds of new jobs too, and we are thrilled to welcome our new colleagues and look forward to them playing a critical role as we continue to succeed and grow.”