Irish regional carrier Aer Arann, the operator of Aer Lingus Regional, reached a 10 percent passenger growth rate in 2013.
The passenger numbers for the airline, which has extended its franchisee agreement with Irish carrier Aer Lingus through 2022, increased to over 1.11 million.
Aer Lingus Regional mainly operates multiple daily flights to all major cities in the UK from its primary base at the Irish capital, Dublin, as well as from the Irish cities of Shannon and Cork.
The airline launched five new routes last year between destinations in Ireland and the UK. This includes flights to Newcastle from Cork and Dublin, to Bristol from Shannon, and from Dublin to Manchester and Birmingham.
The airline’s Dublin to London’s Southend Airport route, launched in mid-2012, witnessed strong growth with total passenger numbers crossing 100,000 this month. London’s Southend Airport is linked to London city center with frequent train service.
Aer Lingus Regional also has increased the number of flights it operates to Aberdeen, Bristol, Cardiff and Glasgow from Dublin and to Birmingham and Manchester from both Cork and Shannon.
For the Summer 2014, the airline plans to launch flights between Shannon and Bristol (UK) and between Cork and Newcastle (UK) as it expands its network.
Aer Lingus Regional operates from Terminal 2 at the Dublin Airport – the same terminal serving arriving and departing transatlantic passengers with flights on Aer Lingus. This enables Aer Lingus passengers to easily connect from their flight to and from the US to flights elsewhere in Ireland and the UK.
Passengers flying/connecting from Shannon and Dublin to the US also benefit from US Customs pre-clearance at both of these airports. This allows passengers to be treated as domestic passengers upon arrival in the US and thus, avoid the long lines and lengthy wait to get through US Customs.