Last month TUI fly (Germany) (X3, Hanover) indicated that it was intending to launch long-haul flights to the Caribbean and Mexico as part of its Winter 2020/21 flying programme, however, the German origin of these services was not discussed by the leisure airline at the time.

"We are currently in talks with several large airports in Germany, including Frankfurt Int'l, Munich and Düsseldorf," confirmed a TUI fly spokesman to Germany's Express newspaper. "There will be a decision at the beginning of the year [2020]," added the airline spokesperson.

One of these airports is likely to be the base for two B787-8s to operate intercontinental flights next year as TUI fly wants to make the most of where capacities have become free after the bankruptcy of Thomas Cook Airlines UK (MT, Manchester Int'l) and its tour operating parent earlier this year. It wants to claim some of the estimated 500,000 customers of the insolvent travel group.

The outcome could be very important for the selected airport as it is mooted that three more B787-8s could be added to the base, representing a significant slug of capacity.

In terms of the 12 airports that the airline currently serves in Germany, the largest origin market is Hanover, with 20% of TUI fly's weekly capacity. However, both Frankfurt and Düsseldorf, mooted as potential long-haul bases, are not far behind with 18% and 17% of weekly seats respectively. Munich, however, is around half the size of the three biggest TUI fly airports, with 9% of weekly capacity.