Aer Lingus Targets Business Routes as Part of Airport Switch
DUBLIN, July 19, 2012 /PRNewswire/ –
Aer Lingus is to move to George Best Belfast City Airport in the autumn after five
years at Belfast International.
Following a tender process involving both airports, the decision has been taken to
base two aircraft at the city airport during the winter and three during the summer.
A new-look winter schedule for 2012 will target two key routes for business, leisure
and transfer traffic to London Heathrow and London Gatwick. There will be three flights
daily to each airport in each direction.
The summer schedule, which begins from the end of March 2013, will operate daily
flights to two sun destinations, Malaga and Faro in addition to the three daily rotations
each to London Heathrow and Gatwick airports.
“Northern Ireland’s vital London connections are secure with Aer Lingus,” said
Christoph Mueller, the airline’s chief executive, who announced the decision to move
airports. “The two aircraft which we normally use in the winter for a mixture of sun
destinations and Heathrow will be used for Heathrow and Gatwick with a third aircraft
serving two European routes in the new-look summer schedule.”
He added: “This is a commercial decision delivering value for our customers and the
company. George Best Belfast City Airport delivers a compelling location and a strong
history of business flying. We believe the move will appeal to the 600,000 plus passengers
annually who fly with us and especially the business traveller who now has a choice of two
London airports with Aer Lingus.
“Indeed business travellers based in the Belfast City centre will now be able to
substantially reduce transit times from office to aircraft. Customers who are members of
our Gold Circle frequent flyer programme will also be able to use the business lounge
facilities at George Best Belfast City Airport. We believe our dual offer of Heathrow and
Gatwick supports the local marketplace during these challenging economic times.”
Mr Mueller said the 100 jobs created in the GBP100 million investment made by Aer
Lingus in Northern Ireland five years ago remained secure.
“We remain committed to the Northern Ireland marketplace,” he said. “Jobs are secured
in this move and indeed our plans for new routes in the future, may see employment and
Aer Lingus works closely with a number of partner airlines and expects transfer
traffic to grow through both Heathrow and Gatwick.
Brian Ambrose, Chief Executive of George Best Belfast City Airport said: “We extend a
warm welcome to Aer Lingus and look forward to working closely with the airline in
creating a strong base in which to develop a growing route network.
“I am delighted with the frequency of services to London Heathrow and Gatwick. By the
end of October, Belfast City will offer Northern Ireland’s only linkage to Heathrow with
10 flights per day.”
Aer Lingus will commence flying from George Best Belfast City Airport on Sunday 28th
About Aer Lingus:
Aer Lingus was founded by the Irish Government in April 1936 to provide air services
to/from Ireland. The first flight, from Dublin to Bristol, took place on May 27th 1936.
Aer Lingus’ low-cost, low fares model is centred on maintaining low unit cost,
offering one way fares, maintaining effective fleet utilisation and developing the Aer
Lingus brand. Consistent with this low-cost model, Aer Lingus’ primary distribution
channel is its website aerlingus.com where customers can find a number of cheap flight
tickets [http://www.aerlingus.com ] and flight deals
[http://www.aerlingus.com/travelinformation/weboffersfromireland ] from Ireland, as well as
take advantage of the Aer Lingus check in app and purchase travel vouchers.
Aer Lingus provides a cargo transportation service on some of its scheduled passenger
routes, including services to the United States and Europe. Aer Lingus provides mail
transportation services between Ireland and the United Kingdom.
PR Contact: Declan Kearney Aer Lingus Corporate Communications Aer Lingus Head Office Dublin Airport Co. Dublin Ireland PA 06-39 +353-86-6172702 http://www.aerlingus.com
SOURCE Aer Lingus