Airport fire service wish the first Aer Lingus flight to
Barcelona a fond farewell with water arches
Department of Enterprise Trade and Investment Permanent
Secretary Stephen Quinn greets the first passengers to
arrive on the inaugural Aer Lingus flight from
Amsterdam. He is pictured with Aer Lingus Chief
Executive Dermot Mannion and Belfast International
Managing Director John Doran
THE first Aer Lingus flights from Belfast
International Airport at Aldergrove took off on Monday putting
the seal on a £100 million investment announced in August.
The first destinations served were Amsterdam
and Barcelona. A Geneva service began on Tuesday and flights to
Budapest, Malaga, Rome, Faro and Nice are due to begin before
The Irish flag carrier's arrival at
Aldergrove will also see the re-introduction of flights to
London Heathrow on Monday January 14. This will allow local
travellers to link up with the global British Airways network
through a codeshare arrangement between by the airlines.
Aer Lingus will base three A320 aircraft at
Aldergrove which it said will support up to 100 direct jobs as
well as around 500 indirect posts in the first year.
It expects to carry more than half-a-million
passengers in its initial 12 months of operations at Belfast and
its Chief Executive Dermot Mannion said Monday marked "a new era
in flying both for the people of Northern Ireland and Aer
"Our investment in three aircraft and 100
jobs in our first base outside the Republic signals our firm
intent to develop new markets as the company continues to grow
and serve an expanding route network,' he continued.
"We are committed to delivering a combination
of low fares and high-value service, something we believe the
people of Northern Ireland, and indeed those living in the
northern half of this island, will appreciate."
Mr. Mannion also announced Aer Lingus's
Operations Director Dick Butler has been appointed Base Manager
at Aldergrove. "He will work alongside our new Sales
Manager Ireland, Valerie Ward, completing an
exciting team ready to tackle what is a challenging
marketplace," the Chief Executive added.
"We believe we have the right mix of routes and
fares, all available at
www.aerlingus.com, that will appeal to the Northern Ireland
traveller and we look forward to welcoming them on board."