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Major boost for the West of Ireland as Flybe commences new services from Birmingham & Edinburgh to Ireland West Airport

ISSUED BY CONNAUGHT AIRPORT KNOCK:

31st March 2016

(Sunday 27th March 2016) Flybe, Europe’s largest regional airline, has today celebrated the launch of their new year round services from Ireland West Airport to both Birmingham and Edinburgh.  Both new services will provide a welcome boost of 70,000 new seats to and from the West of Ireland in 2016.

Flybe will operate six weekly flights to both Birmingham and Edinburgh from Ireland West Airport and are currently on sale for both the summer and winter seasons on www.flybe.com. This expansion of Flybe services is great news for the West and North West of Ireland as represents the biggest seat capacity announcement for the West and North West in 2016, which will come as welcome news for leisure, business and tourism interests in the region.

Edinburgh and Birmingham have long been popular destinations for passengers in this region and are expected to generate strong inbound tourism numbers given the airports location as the central gateway for the Wild Atlantic Way.

In a further boost the airline is also increasing flights to and from its Manchester hub, adding an additional 8,000 seats this summer, with a choice of up to six weekly flights from which airport passengers can connect seamlessly to further Flybe destinations or to the many others offered through Manchester with its interline partners.

Vincent Hodder, Flybe’s Chief Revenue Officer said: “Flybe is absolutely delighted to be operating flights to Ireland West Airport from both Birmingham and Edinburgh from the start of our 2016 Summer programme. We are committed to offering customers in the West of Ireland ‘the fastest way from A to Flybe’ and we just love the fact that we are improving travel options for customers travelling to and from the West and North West of Ireland. We look forward to welcoming many new passengers on board.”

Welcoming today’s launch of the new Flybe services, Niall Gibbons, CEO of Tourism Ireland, said: “The launch of the new Flybe flights from Edinburgh and Birmingham, and the expansion of services from Manchester, is more good news for tourism to the West & North West of Ireland in 2016 – expanding travel options for British holidaymakers wishing to visit this part of Ireland. We look forward to working closely with Flybe and Ireland West Airport to maximise the promotion of the new services. As an island destination, the importance of convenient, direct, non-stop flights cannot be overstated – they are absolutely critical to achieving growth in inbound tourism.”

Managing Director of Ireland West Airport Joe Gilmore said, “We are delighted to welcome the launch of these two new services to key UK markets in Birmingham and Edinburgh with Flybe. This further cements the airports position as the premier UK gateway for the West of Ireland as we now service nine different access points, the biggest selection of UK services from the West and North West of Ireland. Today’s launch highlights Flybe’s commitment to serving the people of the West & North West of Ireland, providing vital connectivity to key markets all year round”.

Flights from Ireland West Airport to Birmingham and Edinburgh are on sale on www.flybe.com Flights will operate on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Sundays. For further airport information log onto www.irelandwestairport.com.

- Ends –
For further MEDIA information contact:

Flybe press office:T: 0845 675 0681     E: [email protected]

Donal Healy, Head of Marketing & Route Development
Ireland West Airport Knock
T: +(087) 4165612  
E:[email protected]            

Notes to Editors:
Flybe, Europe's largest regional airline – 216 routes serving 10 countries from 75 departure points, 37 UK/38 European airports* (all routes on sale Mar ’16 – Oct ‘16); operates more UK domestic flights than any other airline (UK CAA Feb ’15 – Jan‘16); one of only two UK-based carriers in top 20 global airlines punctuality league table by OAG (Jan ’16) and named top UK airline for punctuality in report issued by UK consumer watchdog Which? (Dec 2014); named ‘Best Short-Haul Airline’ at the 2016 Business Travel Awards (Jan ‘16);is the largest scheduled airline by air traffic movements at Belfast City, Birmingham, Bournemouth, Cardiff, Exeter, Glasgow, Isle of Man, Jersey, Manchester, Newquay and Southampton airports(UK CAA Jan ’16);operates fleet of75 aircraft – 52 Bombardier Q400, 9 Embraer 195, 11 E175 & 3 ATR 72s; codeshares with BA, Air France, Etihad, KLM, Finnair, Aer Lingus, Cathay Pacific and Emirates; has three franchise partners, Loganair, Stobart Air and Blue Islands making it only UK airline brand with 72% coverage of reporting airports (UK CAA Jan ’15); has own globally recognised Training Academy in Exeter with flight deck and cabin crew simulator facilities, 26 classrooms and 150-seat conference facility.

*Flown under the Flybe brand (30 routes/11 airports exclusively served by Flybe’s franchise partner, Loganair: and 3 routes and 3 airports exclusively operated by franchise partner, Stobart Air)