Aer Lingus Regional, operated by Stobart Air, announced the addition of a new route to its network today, with flights to Leeds Bradford due to begin on 23 October 2014.
The expansion of the airline’s route network follows the ongoing success of the franchise agreement between Stobart Air and Aer Lingus which saw both a Shannon to Bristol and Cork to Newcastle service launched earlier this year.
Today’s announcement is the first time that Aer Lingus has operated flights to Leeds Bradford in 14 years.
Aer Lingus Regional expects to carry up to 70,000 customers annually on the new route and will operate all services on the company’s brand new fleet of regional aircraft. All flights to/from Leeds Bradford will operate from Aer Lingus’s hub at Dublin Airport’s Terminal 2, which houses the unique US Customs and Border Pre-Clearance facility.
The route will offer daily return services to accommodate business passengers travelling to Dublin and will enable UK-based passengers to connect to Aer Lingus mainline transatlantic services to New York, Boston, Chicago, Orlando, San Francisco and Toronto.
Speaking today, Mr. Julian Carr, Managing Director of Stobart Air, said that the launch of the route marks a significant milestone for Aer Lingus Regional.
Mr. Carr said: “We are delighted to announce the launch of this new route from Dublin Airport, offering more destinations, choice and convenience for Aer Lingus Regional customers travelling between Ireland and the UK.
“We hope this service will continue to facilitate the long-established Irish community which has thrived near the city centre of Leeds for nearly 200 years.
“Equally, the new route will enable UK-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. It is estimated that this service will save passengers up to two hours on arrival at US destinations. “Aer Lingus Regional is committed to providing our customers with easy, convenient and great value in regional connections. We look forward to welcoming our passengers on board this new route,” Mr Carr concluded.
Dublin Airport Managing Director, Mr. Vincent Harrison, welcomed the launch of the new Aer Lingus Regional service to Leeds Bradford, which he said would offer additional choice to passengers travelling between Ireland and Britain and also provide easy connections onto Dublin Airport’s expanding long-haul network.
“Dublin Airport is rapidly becoming a major European hub for transatlantic traffic and this new service will allow even more customers to experience the excellent transfer product at Dublin,” Mr. Harrison added.
“Passengers connecting at Dublin have access to a huge range of choice on North American destinations and can also avail of pre-clearance facilities for US-bound flights, meaning all US customs and immigration checks are carried out in Dublin prior to take-off.”
Mr. Harrison said Dublin Airport executives would be “working closely with Aer Lingus Regional to promote the new service to Leeds Bradford and also the huge potential for onward connections at Dublin Airport”.