Aer Lingus to add two new North American destinations

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and Montreal on shortlist for new transatlantic flights

IAG chief executive Willie Walsh said the company performed strongly in both unit revenue and costs.

IAG chief executive Willie Walsh said the company performed strongly in both unit revenue and costs.

 

Pittsburgh in the US and Montreal in Canada are said to be amongst the new transatlantic destinations that Aer Lingus is considering for next year.

Aer Lingus chief executive Stephen Kavanagh confirmed on Friday that the airline planned to cut a shortlist of three possible North American destinations to a final two in coming weeks.

He did not name any of the candidates, but sources suggest that Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and Montreal in Canada could feature on the list, along with a possible destination in the midwest.

“We hope to make an announcement in the next two to three weeks as to the location of those two new destinations,” Mr Kavanagh said.

Mr Kavanagh said that Aer Lingus was likely to begin flying to both from July 2019 and seats would go on sale following the announcement.

Next year Aer Lingus will begin adding 12 new Airbus A321 long range craft to its fleet.

These are cheaper to run than traditional long-haul planes, and will allow the airline fly to destinations that may not have been viable in the past.

Aer Lingus flies to 13 North American destinations. The carrier has added many of these services since International Consolidated Airlines’ Group (IAG) bought it in 2015.

Mr Kavanagh said that Aer Lingus believed Dublin Airport’s planned spending programme would tackle infrastructure shortfalls there.

A Dublin Airport spokesman responded that it worked with Aer Lingus and other airlines so “ the processes of both the airport and its key customers can be improved for their mutual benefit and the benefit of the travelling public.”

Mr Kavanagh was speaking after IAG published figures showing that Aer Lingus doubled operating profit to €104 million in the six months ended June 30th from €53 million during the same period last year.

IAG’s operating profit for the six months to June 30th, 2018, was €1.2 billion, which was an improvement of €165 million on last year.