EasyJet says it hopes to increase passenger numbers 25% year on year at Southend airport and break the one million passenger barrier this year.
The airline has brought in an additional aircraft at the base and launched its first flight to Bordeaux on Wednesday (July 25), one of four new routes.
Operating three times a week, the Bordeaux route - flying Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays - will have capacity for more than 30,000 passengers a year.
It has also added Prague, Pula and Dubrovnik, taking the total number of routes flying from Southend to 20.
Sophie Dekkers, easyJet director of UK market, said the airline expected Bordeaux to become a popular short break destination.
“The addition of another aircraft this summer will help us to deliver long term, sustainable growth at [Southend] while providing passengers a greater range of destinations.”
Meanwhile, easyJet has launched a major recruitment programme offering more than 1,200 new permanent and fixed term cabin crew positions, more than half of which will be based in the UK.
New recruits will complete a series of online tasks before undertaking three weeks’ thorough practical demonstrations in areas such as safety procedure, aviation security and first aid.