Europe’s largest LCC Ryanair intends to operate a daily schedule of almost 1,000 flights from July 1, with service from “most” of its 80 bases across Europe.
Since mid-March when lockdown restrictions were imposed to curb the spread of COVID-19, the Irish airline has been operating about 30 flights per day. However, its planned schedules from July would restore 90% of its pre-coronavirus route network and 40% of capacity.
The carrier added there would be fewer daily and weekly frequencies on trunk routes as it works to restore some service on the widest number of routes, rather than operating high frequency services on a small number.
Ryanair said the plans are subject to government restrictions on flights within the EU being lifted and “effective public health measures” being put in place at airports.
Crew and passengers will be required to wear face masks and pass temperature checks, while social distancing will be “encouraged.” Queuing for toilets will also be prohibited on board but passengers can request access.
Ryanair CEO Eddie Wilson said: “It is important for our customers and our people that we return to some normal schedules from 1 July onwards.
“Governments around Europe have implemented a four-month lockdown to limit the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
“After four months, it is time to get Europe flying again so we can reunite friends and families, allow people to return to work and restart Europe’s tourism industry, which provides so many millions of jobs.”
Ryanair’s announcement did not address the UK government’s plans to introduce a 14-day quarantine period for passengers arriving by air but said it will require all passengers in July and August to fill in details at check in of how long their planned visit will be and also their holiday address. This will be given to European governments to help them monitor any isolation regulations they require.
Among the routes scheduled to restart from July are London Gatwick (LGW)-Alicante (ALC), which will be 3X-weekly; Manchester (MAN)-Seville (SVQ), which will be 2X-weekly; and London Stansted (STN)-Copenhagen (CPH), which will be 1X-daily.
Photo credit: Nigel Howarth / Aviation Week