Monday 8th August. Stelios Haji-Ioannou, Head of Easyjet and purveyor of all things cheap and nasty, has launched his latest venture - "EasyShuttle". As NASA's multi-trillion dollar waste of money Discovery prepares to avoid being cremated a new player in the international space market has entered the fray. In an announcement bound to upset Richard Branson's "SpaceShipTwo" scheme the thrifty Greek entrepreneur spelled out his plans...
"We aim to offer no-frills space travel to those who otherwise could not afford to go," said Stelios at a press conference, "we will operate EasyShuttle along the same lines as EasyJet, in other words, we'll double book flights, have unreserved seats so everyone fights over who sits near the window, and, no one will get any free peanuts during the flight."
Easy Shuttle is the latest cheap scheme of the 37 year old Stelios who's career started out with Stelmar Shipping and then moved into aviation with EasyJet. Today's announcement follows the recent opening of the first EasyHotel which offers no frills, no television, no mattress, no pillows, no duvet and no bed. Stelios also runs a fleet of cars and buses, each bearing the imaginatively titled "Easy" prefix and garish orange logo.
"I want to have more hideously-coloured orange companies all over the Earth and beyond, " beamed the Greek, "EasyShuttle is just the beginning. I'm going to branch out further. Next year I will launch EasyArmy - a no frills group of mercenaries, dressed in orange uniforms, available for hire anywhere in the world. The new Iraqi government have already expressed an interest. I also plan to start EasyHard - a cheap alternative to viagra, except my pill wont be blue. EasyBog is another one we are hoping to 'get going' - a cheap portaloo to help those caught short 'get going' in public."
Passenger groups today welcomed the move with caution:
"It sounds as if it's more choice for consumers which is great news, " said travel writer David McDavids, "as long as passengers going to Malaga don't get told their luggage has been sent to the moon by mistake."