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A Ryanair 737 taxiing in London. (Photo: AirlineGeeks | William Derrickson)

Ryanair Set to Reopen Belfast Base

Ryanair, Europe’s largest low-cost airline, announced this week that it will return to Belfast International Airport (BFS), Northern Ireland. According to the company, it will offer twelve routes from the airport from March 2023. In total, it plans to operate around 115 flights a week to and from the airport.

The Belfast-based company’s fleet will consist of two aircraft. The establishment of the new hub will require an investment of 200 million and will create “over 60 highly paid aviation jobs” directly, according to Ryanair. In addition, the opening would contribute to the creation of more than 650 indirect jobs.

“We are delighted to have reached a long-term agreement with Belfast International’s management, which will underpin future Ryanair growth at the Airport over the coming years,” said Jason McGuinness, the company’s Director of Commercial.

In addition, the company said that in order to consolidate the recovery of aviation in the United Kingdom, “the government needs to immediately support airlines» by «scrapping the aviation tax (APD) entirely for all flights.”

This U.K. tax applies to commercial passenger air transport operations departing from the United Kingdom or the Isle of Man using aircraft with an authorized take-off weight of more than 5.7 tonnes or aircraft with more than twenty passenger seats.

In October 2021, the British administration introduced a 50% reduction in the tax for flights between U.K. airports. The new amount will apply from April 2023, in a bid to boost regional connectivity. However, Ryanair says it is “simply insufficient.”

This story was originally published by Agustin Miguens on Aviacionline in syndication with AirlineGeeks.


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