Ryanair to cut Dublin flights

16 Jul 2008 by Mark Caswell

Low-cost carrier Ryanair is to cut 12 per cent of flights to and from its Dublin base this winter, blaming high costs at the airport.

Ryanair says the reduction is equivalent to around 500,000 passengers passing through the airport. Among the cutbacks are flights to Stansted, which will decrease from 58 to 50 per week, while its Leeds Bradford service will be cut from 19 flights to 13.

The carrier says that Dublin airport is the second most expensive of its bases, and that costs at the facility “continue to increase at multiples of the present rate of inflation”.

Commenting on the decision, Ryanair’s CEO Michael O’Leary said: “We regret this significant capacity reduction at Dublin airport this winter. It will be the first time for many years that Ryanair has reduced capacity at Dublin airport.

“However, the combination of Dublin’s high costs, unjustified cost increases [up 40 per cent in the last 4 years], and a hopeless aviation regulator who has most recently rubber-stamped doubling charges for check-in desks and check-in kiosks, makes it more profitable for Ryanair to ground these aircraft rather than fly them at Dublin airport this winter.”

In February this year, O’Leary warned that the carrier’s profits could drop “by up to 50 per cent” if rising fuel prices and a recession were to occur this year – since then, fuel prices have risen from US$90 per barrel to today’s price of over US$140.

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Report by Mark Caswell

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