BUDGET airline Ryanair is to reinstate four of the 20 routes slashed from its Scottish operations earlier this year.

The Irish operator cut services from Glasgow Airport in February.

The shift would have left it flying to only three destinations from the major holiday hub.

Now it is to bring back services to sunshine favourites Alicante and Malaga as well as Warsaw plus Charleroi in Brussels next year.

Responding to the announcement, Mark Johnston, managing director of Glasgow Airport, said it was “very welcome news”.

He added: “The introduction of these services is hopefully a first step to Ryanair re-establishing a strong presence here and we are really pleased the airline recognises our position as the west of Scotland’s principal airport and gateway to the region’s huge market.”

The changes follows the announcement earlier this month that Ryanair is also to operate 11 new routes from Edinburgh Airport from summer 2019.

Destinations include culture capitals Lisbon, Stockholm and Tallinn.

Together, its almost-60 routes are predicted to bring 3.5 million passengers through Edinburgh aiport next year.

Meanwhile, under-pressure airline Flybe has said it is in talks with a number of “strategic operators” about a possible sale of the group.

Flybe said the decision to put itself up for sale comes amid a range of options being considered as it battles against challenging conditions in the airline industry.

The group recently issued a profits warning as the result of easing demand and a £29m hit from rising fuel costs and the weak pound.

Chief executive Christine Ourmieres-Widener said the group continued to see improvements in the third quarter and cost savings had already helped to drive progress in boosting profits.

But she added: “There has been a recent softening in growth in the short-haul market, as well as continued headwinds from higher fuel and currency costs.

“We are responding to this by reviewing every aspect of our business, especially further capacity reduction, cash management and cost savings.”

Shares in Flybe jumped as much as 44% on opening, before paring back to stand 11% higher.