Scots fliers have enjoyed 13% air fares cut in the last year

Budget airline Norwegian could help further cut average fares to New York with the launch of flights from Edinburgh in June.

Budget airline Norwegian could help further cut average fares to New York with the launch of flights from Edinburgh in June.

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Air passengers flying from Scotland have seen fares reduced by an average 13 per cent over the last year, according to Edinburgh-based flight search firm Skyscanner.

That compares to an average 10 per cent reduction across the UK.

The company said falling oil prices and increased competition may have contributed to cheaper tickets.

It is thought that high demand on some routes, such as New York, has prompted more airlines to launch flights, driving down average prices.

In addition, lack of demand on other routes may have led to prices being cut to entice more people to book seats.

Skyscanner's figures show passengers on European routes saw the largest price cuts - of 12.7 per cent.

Long-haul travellers from Scotland enjoyed a 7 per cent reduction - similar to the fall across the UK.

There was also a 5 per cent price reduction in UK flights from Scotland, but that was lower than the 7.5 per cent across the UK.

But this might increase this year after Flybe launched flights between Edinburgh, Aberdeen and Heathrow last month in competition with British Airways.

Journeys from Scotland which showed the greatest reductions included a 14 per cent cut in the average fare to Vancouver to £579 - a saving of £91.

Orlando in Florida, one of Scotland's most popular flight destinations, saw a 13 per cent cut to £538 - £79 less than the previous year.

Scots flying to Las Vegas paid an £83 less, or 12 per cent, with the average fare down to £597.

New York-bound passengers saw a smaller reduction, of 6 per cent, or £30, to £477.

However, the savings may increase this year because low-cost airline Norwegian is launching budget flights to an airport north of the city from Edinburgh in June.

It follows Delta last year joining two other airlines - United and American - in competing between Edinburgh and New York, which is thought to have reduced average fares.

The Skyscanner figures were based on millions of flight searches where people have clicked through from Skyscanner to airline websites in the year to last month compared to the previous year.

Aviation analyst John Strickland, of JLS Consulting, said: "Scotland has enjoyed an increasingly diverse and competitive flight offer in recent years.

"Low-cost carriers have led price reductions on short haul.

"Long haul sees a lot of competition for customers on direct services to the USA, soon to be added to by Norwegian's long-haul low cost flights.

"There is also enormous capacity to choose from for connections via European and Middle Eastern hubs.

"Falling fuel prices and over capacity in some markets have also contributed to the price falls."

Skyscanner travel editor Cat McGloin said: "Whilst it is hard to predict the exact future trends of flight prices and if they will continue to drop, what we do know is the price of oil, flight demand and route availability all impact on the cost of flights.

"Finding cheap prices can be easily if travellers are flexible.

"Choosing to depart from a different airport or changing the date of travel are just two quick hacks to consider.”