EASTERN Europe's biggest budget airline is to launch twice weekly flights between Glasgow and Poland after deciding to pull out of Prestwick Airport.

Wizz Air is abandoning the Ayrshire hub after seven years by introducing flights to Warsaw and Gdansk from the city for less than £24.

The Glasgow service launches in March and the Hungarian airline hopes the switch from Prestwick will be more convenient for passengers.

Stijn Vandermoere, the airline's head of network development and scheduling, said: "Wizz Air is pleased to announce these two new routes operating from Glasgow Airport.

"Our popular low fares have strongly grown our business in four UK airports. We believe there is also significant growth potential in Scotland.

"We are confident that Polish visitors to Scotland will embrace the convenient airport location and we urge Scottish consumers to try Wizz Air's award-winning service and low fares."

To celebrate the start of flights out of Glasgow from March 1 Wizz is selling single tickets to Warsaw and Gdansk for £23.99p online at wizzair.com. The price includes taxes.

Amanda McMillan, managing director of Glasgow Airport, said: "We are thrilled to welcome Wizz Air on board which is yet more good news for Glasgow Airport.

"Not only will it provide our customers with greater choice, it will further strengthen our connectivity with some of Europe's major cities and it means we can add Poland to our long list of destinations after an absence of more than 15 years.

"We are looking forward to working alongside the team at Wizz to ensure it enjoys further growth and success at Glasgow. This announcement underlines our commitment to expanding our route network and delivering the routes and services our customers demand."

Today's boost comes at a time when airport chiefs in Glasgow pledged more flights and more destinations to keep hold of the hub's coveted crown as Scotland's long-haul capital. The promise was made after rivals in Edinburgh announced £15million of discounts in a bid to attract new long-haul carriers.

In Glasgow, more than seven airlines offer flights to far away destinations as the airport handles around a million long-haul passengers every year.

One success story is Emirates. It's Glasgow-Dubai service is a huge hit with business and leisure travellers. Laurie Berryman, Emirates UK Vice President, said: "The Glasgow service has gone from strength to strength"

An airport spokesman said: "We will continue to expand our route network by promot-ing the in-bound tourism potential of Glasgow."