Irish carrier, Aer Lingus is set to launch a new seasonal service to Dusseldorf from Cork Airport in summer 2016.
The twice-weekly service will operate on Wednesdays and Sundays from May next year to the German city which is located in the centre of the Rhine-Ruhr region – Germany’s largest metropolitan area.
Germany is the third largest market for visitors to Ireland and Dusseldorf is a significant international business and financial centre, and the addition of the new route compliments the airline’s existing year-round Cork – Munich service.
“We expect there to be strong demand for this route from both inbound and outbound passengers,” said Cork Airport Managing Director, Niall MacCarthy. “We already have 50 routes from Cork Airport, making us the largest airport outside of Dublin, and this new service to Düsseldorf is further recognition of our status as a key gateway in and out of the South of Ireland,” he added.
A number of German tour operators have agreed to include Cork in their programme of destinations for 2016. This collaborative model has the potential to deliver additional new services to the airport and the region, according to Mr MacCarthy.
“The success of securing the new Düsseldorf route is proof that when all of us involved in the travel and tourism sector come together and work as a team, we can do great things for the region. I have no doubt that now we have created a model that works for all stakeholders, we will see further additional new routes for Cork Airport over the coming months,” he said.
Last year, more than 560,000 Germans visited Ireland, and growing visitor numbers from Germany is a key target for the Irish tourism industry.
Dusseldorf Airport is Germany’s third largest, handling 21.8 million passengers last year, and with more than 400 trains per day stopping at one of its two onsite train stations, it offers convenient direct mainline trains to many other German cities, as well as a direct link to Dusseldorf city centre.
This is the second major new route announcement for Cork Airport in recent days, after CityJet announced they will fly to London City Airport 18-times-weekly from October 1, 2015.
Daa Chief Executive, Kevin Toland also welcomed the announcement of the new Aer Lingus Dusseldorf service from Cork: “This is the second new route for Cork Airport announced within the past week, and our team in Cork are continuing to seek out new opportunities with additional services with both existing and new customer airlines,” he said.