Stobart Air calls for long term aviation plan as it unveils new routes

Company says new routes will link Belfast and Dublin with southwest of England

Stobart Air will run the Aer Lingus Regional service until the end of December 2022.

Stobart Air has called on the Government to develop a plan for the long-term future of the aviation system, including a vaccine passport system.

The Aer Lingus Regional operator, which yesterday confirmed a sale to Isle of Man group Ettyl, also said it would add two new routes linking Belfast and Dublin with the southwest coast of England in the coming months.

Stobart Air has called on the Irish Government to put in place a policy that will allow people who have been fully vaccinated to travel, to help restore public confidence in aviation and help air travel to resume.

It is also seeking to convene a taskforce involving key industry stakeholders to discuss and plan for the long-term future of aviation.


"The aviation industry needs a clear plan for when and how air travel can safely resume in line with vaccination rollout programmes," said Andy Jolly, managing director at Stobart Air.

“Stobart Air calls on the Irish Government to work with all industry stakeholders to restore confidence in aviation and facilitate the resumption of safe air travel in line with the vaccination rollout programme. In the immediate term this includes developing a vaccine passport procedure to allow people who have received their complete vaccine course to travel without restriction within the Common Travel Area.”

Mr Jolly said the new routes, which will commence between Belfast to Newquay Cornwall in June and between Dublin to Exeter at the end of August, were subject to a timeline that provides certainty for airlines, airports and customers. The flights will operate in line with Covid-19 protocols.

Ciara O'Brien

Ciara O'Brien

Ciara O'Brien is an Irish Times business and technology journalist