Ryanair to return to Belfast City after 11-year absence

Mar 4, 2021

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Budget carrier Ryanair has announced it will restart eight routes from Belfast City Airport (BHD) this summer.

The news comes 11 years after the airline initially ceased using the Northern Irish capital’s secondary airport as one of its destinations, though it still has continued to use Belfast International Airport (BFS).

The new routes from Belfast City will fly to Malaga, Mallorca, Faro, Alicante, Barcelona, Ibiza, Milan Bergamo and Valencia. The move to resume service from Belfast City will open a whole host of additional budget travel opportunities for people living in NI.

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(Photo by Liam McBurney/PA Images via Getty Images)

According to RTE, the chief executive of Belfast City Airport said the Ryanair announcement is “excellent news for those in Northern Ireland considering a getaway this summer. Travel has been significantly restricted over the last 12 months and as the vaccine rollout continues at pace and the restrictions ease, we expect there will be considerable demand for these routes.

“We look forward to welcoming Ryanair customers through the terminal,” he added.

Ryanair left the airport in 2010 when a planned runway extension was delayed after a public inquiry.

To promote the routes, Ryanair has launched a seat sale, with fares available from just £14.99 for travel from June to October 2021, which must be booked by midnight Saturday, 6 March.

(Image courtesy of Ryanair)

Ryanair CEO Michael O’Leary has said that he hopes the airline will fly 60%-70% of its usual summer schedule for summer 2021. However, vaccine rollout and various government restrictions might affect those plans.

Related: Expect even lower Ryanair fares in the coming months

O’Leary confirmed that Ryanair’s annual passenger numbers had fallen from about 150 million before the pandemic to just 27 million by the end of March 2021, according to Routes Online.

“We’ll be hopeful if that happens that we’ll be able to operate at close to breakeven for the year to March 2022, and then we might see a recovery of profitability into March 2023,” O’Leary said.

Featured photo by  PASCAL PAVANI/AFP/Getty Images

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