A new airline – Brighton City Airways – opens for business on Saturday (1 December) with Paris as its initial destination.
The first flight is due to take off from Shoreham Airport – to be rebranded as Brighton (Shoreham) Airport on Wednesday 6 March.
Two return flights a day are planned – one in the morning and the other in the afternoon – to Pontoise Airport in La Defense business district.
Shuttle buses will pick up and drop off passengers at Shoreham railway station and to the Metro station nearest Pontoise Airport.
Prices start from £69 one way, including all taxes and charges. One of the airline’s founders, Neil Laughton, 49, from Small Dole, promised a 15-minute check-in and said that the aim was to attract business customers as well as holidaymakers and day trippers.
He said that Gatwick lacked a Paris service, with the nearest rival airports being Southampton and Heathrow.
Airport manager Ric Belfield said: “This is absolutely what we want to see at the airport, scheduled international travel bringing lots of people through our historic airport, which was the first licensed airfield in Britain.
“This has prompted us to rename the airport Brighton (Shoreham) Airport, to link it properly to our neighbouring city.”
Tim Loughton, the Conservative MP for East Worthing and Shoreham, said: “I am delighted to see cross-Channel flights returning to Shoreham.
“Shoreham Airport has a lot to offer as a base for short-hop trips to the continent with a large market of travellers on its doorstep who otherwise have to spend more time travelling to and through the London airports than in the air.
“I wish the new operators well and hope this is the start of big things to come.”
The airline’s founders said that if things go well, they would consider other destinations such as Brussels, Jersey and Manchester.
Mr Laughton set up the airline with Jonathan Candelon, 31, from Haywards Heath, the managing director of Flying Time Aviation, the flying training school based at Shoreham.
They met four years ago when Mr Laughton, a former Royal Marine, took flying lessons at the school for a “flying car”.
Mr Laughton’s adventurous past has included leading TV presenter Bear Grylls to the summit of Mount Everest and managing his Mission Everest world record motorised parachute flight in 2007.
The airline will carry up to 19 passengers on each flight aboard a Let 410 twin-engine turboprop aircraft.
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