The Irish Aviation Authority has said that the skies above Ireland have had their busiest year on record, with an expected 1.1 million flights in 2016.
By the end of November, flights handled by the IAA were up by 8.6% on the same 11 months in 2015.
That includes a 10.5% rise in flights to and from Dublin, Cork and Shannon airports.
The number of flights passing through Irish airspace rose by 8%.
Eamonn Brennan, chief Executive of the IAA said: "Altogether, air traffic has expanded by nearly 9% this year, driven by very strong lifts at both Dublin Airport and through Irish airspace on flights between Europe and North America.
"What's encouraging about 2016 is the fact that the growth is across all fields and not limited to one area. Cork and Shannon have both recorded gains in 2016, up 12% and 2.4% respectively."
Reflecting on the key developments of 2016, he said: "There's no doubting it, the continued growth of Ryanair is phenomenal - they'll carry over 119 million passengers in 2016 (financial year ending March 2017).
"At the same time, Are Lingus have really capitalised on being part of the IAG group with a significant expansion of their Transatlantic operation (+15%).
"We’ve seen Dublin Airport going from strength to strength so the announcement to build the new parallel runway was a very important milestone and the recent positive decision by the US Government concerning Norwegian Air International is great news for both Cork and Shannon airports.
"Our leasing industry continues to thrive as Ireland maintains its place at the centre of the global aviation financing industry, with nine of the world’s top 10 airline lessors based in Ireland."
Looking ahead, he said: "2017 will be a challenging year for the industry with significant increases expected in available seat capacity and this is likely to drive down air fares in Europe.
"The traffic growth will present challenges for the IAA, but I’m confident that our people and our systems will cope with these increases.
"We’ll also commence work on the first noise review of Dublin Airport in accordance with our imminent designation as the competent Authority for airport noise. We’re preparing already."