Autumn for Ryanair growth plan

Ryanair will not increase its services from Cork or Kerry until next autumn, despite a rise in passenger numbers in the region.

It means that any announcement of growth at the two locations will come a year after the airline’s high- profile unveiling of a strengthening of services at the country’s other main airports. Ryanair is set to start the roll-out of its expanded services from Dublin, Shannon, and Knock in April, once the Government’s shelving of the consumer travel tax kicks in.

In the aftermath of last October’s budget announcement, when the Government announced the removal of the tax, Ryanair said it would grow its traffic through Irish airports by around 1m passengers per annum. Twenty new routes — to come on stream in the coming months — were announced at Dublin, Shannon, and Knock late last year.

However, in November, when it launched its Dublin Airport expansion plans, Ryanair warned that new or extended services at Cork and Kerry could take longer to plan, with ongoing long-term growth likely proving more difficult than from the other airports. However, plans for the south-west are still afoot.

Updating the issue, this week, a Ryanair spokesperson said: “We are still talking to Kerry Airport, and to Cork, but it will be Sept 2014 before any new growth is announced, subject to reaching commercial agreements, when we get the first tranche of our delivery of 175 new aircraft.”

Earlier this week, Ryanair announced its passing of the 10m passenger mark at Cork Airport, from where it has been operating for the past 26 years. The airport’s director, Niall MacCarthy, said Cork was looking forward to building on this “significant milestone” over the next 12 months.

Ryanair is due to post its third quarter financial results, covering the three months to the end of December, next week.


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