New Ryanair routes could nearly double Shannon passengers
Government abolition of the travel tax was ‘critical’, says airline’s deputy head
Deputy chief executive of Ryanair, Michael Cawley: “If there was ever an example of the merit of Shannon getting independence, this decision is a reflect of that.”
He was in Shannon yesterday to announce almost a doubling of Ryanair passengers through Shannon next year, from 450,000 to 750,000.
The deal alone represents passenger growth of almost 15 per cent at Shannon next year. “We are here to stay and we are here to grow,” Mr Cawley said, “and we will take it one step at a time. I don’t see any impediment to Ryanair expansion here and further expansion on that top of that.”
Mr Cawley said the Government abolition of the travel tax was “critical” in the deal Ryanair has made with Shannon to fly the routes to Berlin, Paris, Fuerteventura, Warsaw, Faro, Munich, Nice and Krakow. The number of Ryanair routes out of Shannon next year will increase to 18.
Shannon secured its independence from the Dublin Airport Authority last January and Mr Cawley said: “If there was ever an example of the merit of Shannon getting independence, this decision is a reflect of that.”
Yesterday’s announcement comes after the fourth successive month of air passenger growth out of Shannon driven by strong transatlantic traffic.
The Shannon Group chair, Rose Hynes, described the announcement as a “significant” boost. “Shannon was in recovery mode. It is now in growth mode after we have stabilised the airport.” Shannon Group chief executive Neil Pakey said the airport could break even this year.
Mr Cawley said Ryanair had no spare aircraft for the new routes, but that “we are going to take aircraft from other places”.