86,000 passengers to fly from Donegal and Kerry to Dublin this year
Passenger numbers on Donegal route have grown by 52%, Aer Lingus regional operator says
Stobart Air’s Graeme Buchanan (L), pictured with Warwick Brady, chief executive of the Stobart Group. Photograph: Maxwells Dublin
In the last 12 months Stobart Air, which operates the routes for Aer Lingus, grew passenger numbers on the Donegal route by 52 per cent and the Kerry route by 35 per cent.
Some 51,000 people flew between Farranfore, Co Kerry, and Dublin airport between October, 2016 and October, 2017 while the Letterkenny-based Donegal airport saw 33,516 passengers flying to Dublin.
The routes to Donegal and Kerry are Public Service Obligation routes flown on behalf of the government. Stobart Air began flying the Donegal route in 2015 when Loganair ceased to operate the contract. Its entry into the Irish market came in 2010 when it took over the Aer Lingus contract from Aer Arann.
Commenting on the passenger growth, Stobart Air managing director Graeme Buchanan referred to the routes as “vital public services”.
“We are pleased to see passenger numbers increase so significantly in a relatively short period of time. For these rural regions, a link to the capital means more opportunities for work and business, and more ways to stay connected with friends and family,” he said.