19 Aug 2013

Aer Lingus launches new route from Newcastle

DATE: 19-08-13

  • Aer Lingus Regional launches new route to Dublin
  • Airline aims to fly up to 65,000 in year one
  • North East passengers bound for the United States can benefit from US pre-clearance on some US routes in Dublin

Aer Lingus Regional, operated by Aer Arann, today (19 August) launched a new route to Dublin Airport from Newcastle, as the airline continues to implement its growth plan, designed to return the company to profitability in 2014.

Aer Lingus Regional will now operate two daily return flights to Dublin Airport from Newcastle, beginning 24 October, and aims to fly up to 65,000 passengers on the route in the first year.

The flights between Dublin and Newcastle are on sale now.

The addition of this route will facilitate Newcastle-based passengers flying to the US by connecting them to Aer Lingus mainline services to major US and Canadian cities such as New York, Chicago, Boston, Orlando and Toronto through Dublin where passengers can complete security and customs pre-clearance on some of these US routes from Dublin.

Ireland is the only country in Europe to offer passport and customs pre-clearance to some of the main US destinations.

Completing pre-clearance at Dublin Airport, operated and staffed by US Customs and Border staff, means that on arrival in the US, Newcastle-based passengers will be treated similarly to domestic passengers, avoiding delays often associated with US security.

It is estimated that this service will save passengers up to two hours on arrival at US destinations. 

Over 100,000 people fly to the US from the North East each year.

Aer Arann, operator of Aer Lingus Regional, recently announced a package of measures to grow the airline as part of its ‘new beginning’ strategy which aims to return the company to profitability in 2014.

These measures include the launch of three new routes to Manchester, Birmingham and today, the addition of Newcastle to the airlines route network.

The Dublin Newcastle route will be operated by one of the airlines new aircraft and Aer Lingus Regional have scheduled flight times to facilitate a convenient day return for business and leisure passengers.

Aer Arann’s Chief Commercial Officer, Simon Fagan said that the addition of this new Newcastle Dublin route is the next step in the growth plan of Aer Arann which provides further options for passengers flying to Ireland from the North East of England.

‘We are delighted to announce the launch of our newest Newcastle Dublin route. This new route connects Aer Lingus Regional passengers in Newcastle with Ireland’s capital city and adds another of the main UK cities to the airline’s network for Irish passengers. 

‘Equally, the new route will enable Newcastle-based passengers to connect with Aer Lingus mainline services in Dublin where they can pre-clear security and customs for some of the main US cities, in advance of making their onward trip at reduced journey times.

‘Aer Lingus Regional is committed to providing our customers with easy, convenient and great value regional connections. We look forward to welcoming our passengers on board this new Newcastle Dublin service,’ Mr Fagan said.

Chris Sanders, Aviation Development Director at Newcastle International Airport, said: ‘We’re delighted that Aer Lingus Regional will be operating new services to Dublin this year. This announcement increases the schedule choice for passengers flying from Newcastle on this important route.

‘Dublin is a wonderful city break destination with a vibrant culture and fantastic tourist attractions. Business users will also be pleased with the convenient flight times on offer which allow day returns, an incredible benefit for regular visitors to Ireland.

‘The service also eases travel to and from the United States with swift customs pre-clearance at Dublin Airport’s fantastic new Terminal 2 facility. It presents a wide range of connection facilities for travellers which I’m sure will be welcomed by North East holidaymakers and business travellers alike,’ Mr Sanders said.

The airline, which aims to double passenger numbers to over two million over the next five years, has overseen a 32% rise in Aer Lingus Regional passenger numbers in the past 12 months.

Aer Arann operates 550 flights per week across 24 routes in Ireland, the UK and France.