Confirmation of transatlantic flights from Cork expected within days

Details of the first transatlantic flights from Cork Airport could be announced within days after US authorities sanctioned the airline's final operational paperwork last night, writes Eoin English.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) signed off on Norwegian Air International's Section 129 application which now clears the airline to announced route details and begin selling tickets.

The low-fares giant has done a huge amount of preparatory work in anticipation of last night's confirmation and it is understood that everything is now in place to announce the launch of Cork's first transatlantic routes.

Securing such a service has been a strategic goal of airport management for over 50 years.

The routes are expected to generate a massive boost for tourism and business development in the south.

It is expected that Norwegian Air International will announce its Cork to Boston routes first, with flights landing at TF Green Airport in Warwick, Rhode Island, about 112km south of Boston.

It is expected that its Cork - New York service will begin next year.

The airline is also expected to announce services from Shannon, Dublin and Belfast airports to the US too.

News that all the paperwork is now in place comes after the Obama administration granted a foreign carrier permit to the airline after an unprecedented two-and-a-half-year wait, and intense political and lobbying campaign.

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