Dublin Airport will have 850,000 extra seats available this summer, a five per cent increase in capacity compared to last year. A total of 15 new services, comprising 12 short-haul routes to continental Europe and new long-haul routes to San Francisco, Toronto and St. John’s, Newfoundland will begin in the summer season.
Summer 2014 is set to be the busiest since passenger numbers reached their peak in 2008, according to Jon Woolf, Dublin Airport’s senior vice president aviation business development. “We’ve seen a significant increase in capacity with 15 new routes and extra capacity on 24 existing services,” he told The HUB.
North American destinations will see the biggest growth this summer with seat capacity up 17% representing an additional 250,000 seats to the United States and Canada. A total of 268 flights will operate each week which is an average of 38 flights per day.
This summer will also a significant increase in connectivity between Ireland and Canada, with additional services to Toronto – Aer Lingus is launching a new Toronto service and Air Canada will now operate to Toronto year-round with its recently launched Air Canada rouge brand - and a new route to St John’s Newfoundland.
“There are strong corporate and familial connections between Canada and Ireland and we’re delighted to see this increase in services between the two countries. There are also particularly close historical connections between Newfoundland and Ireland so we expect the St John’s service to be a very popular route” Woolf said.
Capacity on European routes is set to increase by four per cent with 520,000 more seats available this summer compared to last year. Ryanair has added nine new routes to its network from Dublin and Aer Lingus has new short-haul services to Hanover and Pula. Ryanair and Aer Lingus are also adding significant extra frequencies to many existing Dublin routes.
Luxair has also returned to the Irish market with a four times weekly service to Luxembourg and extra capacity will also be added to existing services such as United Airways to Newark, Munich and Düsseldorf with Lufthansa, CityJet to London City and Bucharest with Tarom.
There will also be a significant expansion in capacity to the Middle East during the summer season. Etihad will increase its Dublin - Abu Dhabi service from 10 flights per week, to double daily from July, a four per cent increase in frequency providing almost 14,000 seats each week between Ireland and the United Arab Emirates. Meanwhile, Emirates will double capacity on its Dublin - Dubai service from September, when it also goes double daily.