German airline, Lufthansa, expects to carry more than 500,000 passengers on its Irish services by the end of 2015.
Christian Schindler, its regional director for Ireland, Britain and Iceland, said on Tuesday that passenger numbers on its flights to and from this country were up 12 per cent at 375,000 in the year-to-date.
He added that the numbers should “definitely” reach 500,000 across all its flights by the end of the year. “This has been our biggest ever year out of Dublin,” Mr Schindler noted.
The airline increased capacity on its Irish routes by 11 per cent this year, and is now selling close to 90 out of every 100 seats on its aircraft.
A high proportion of its customers are flying into the Republic, for either business or leisure.
However, Mr Schindler pointed out that the airline is also attracting a significant number of Irish fliers, many of whom are connecting to long-haul services through its Frankfurt hub.
"Many Irish passengers fly with us to onward destinations in eastern Europe, China and Japan and even Brazil, " he said.
The Lufthansa Group now operates 40 flights a-week out of Dublin to destinations that include Frankfurt, Munich in Germany and Geneva in Switzerland.
It will cut this back to 34 flights during the winter season, which begins next month.