Aer Arann sees passenger numbers rise

Aer Arann sees passenger numbers rise

Despite inclement weather conditions earlier this year, Aer Lingus Regional, which is operated by Aer Arann says it has recorded a positive start to 2014.

Passenger numbers increased by 23% in January, compared with the same period last year.

The airline's Cork services also saw a return to growth with an 8% increase in passengers.

The airline flew almost 80,000 passengers in January, up from 65,000 in 2013.

Passengers flying to and from Dublin were up 43% and the number of UK-based passengers connecting onto Aer Lingus transatlantic services has doubled over the past year.

Simon Fagan, Commercial Director at Aer Arann said: "These numbers are very encouraging, especially when you consider the challenging weather conditions across Ireland and the UK in January. We made a range of strategic decisions last year to better position the airline for growth. Our focus on providing high frequency services, adding routes to the network and investing in a new aircraft fleet is resonating with passengers.

"We are experiencing a sustained rise in passengers connecting with Aer Lingus mainline services, and this is where the franchise agreement has added a new dimension.

"Advanced sales from UK destinations to the United States are very encouraging. Passengers are responding to the benefits of being able to pre-clear US customs and immigration at both Dublin and Shannon airports.

"In Cork, we are on track to fly over 300,000 passengers travelling this year. Our new Cork to Newcastle service commences next month and the expansion of Cork services to Manchester, Bristol and Glasgow are gaining traction. In response, we are adding new aircraft in Cork this week. From next month, a new route from Shannon to Bristol will come into operation while there are plans to grow existing routes from Dublin."

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