Published on February 26th, 2022 | by Mark Dwyer0
Emerald Airlines Start Scheduled Services
Emerald Airlines, Ireland’s newest airline, and exclusive operator of the Aer Lingus Regional network, today began its scheduled services from Donegal to Dublin. To mark the occasion, Conor McCarthy, CEO and Founder of Emerald Airlines was joined by Minister of State, Hildegarde Naughton, and Steve Ó Cúláin, Chairman, and Eilís Docherty, Managing Director at Donegal Airport, attended a ribbon cutting ceremony at Donegal Airport.
Commenting on the announcement, Conor McCarthy, CEO and Founder of Emerald Airlines, said: “Today marks a huge milestone in our journey to become Ireland’s largest regional airline. There has been a considerable amount of hard work behind the scenes in order to make this day a reality. I would like to thank all those involved; especially our amazing team at Emerald Airlines, our partners in Aer Lingus, Minister for Transport, Eamon Ryan, Minister of State Hildegarde Naughton and their team at the Department of Transport, and our friends at Donegal Airport.”
Only last month Emerald Airlines was selected as the new operator of the Exchequer-funded Public Service Obligation (PSO) air route between Donegal and Dublin, providing an essential air link between the North West and Dublin in the absence of a motorway or rail network in the region.
Emerald Airlines will be offering up to 4 flights daily linking Donegal and Dublin with convenient flight timings that enables same-day return trips to Dublin, and connections on the Aer Lingus network from Dublin. Not only will this be a huge boost for travel between Donegal and Dublin, but it will also re-establish vital tourism connections to Donegal on the wider Aer Lingus network. With further route announcements to be made in the coming weeks, Emerald Airlines plans to operate 360 flights per week across 12 routes this summer.
Emerald Airlines intends to operate high-frequency routes from Belfast City to; Birmingham, Edinburgh, Exeter, Glasgow, Leeds Bradford, and Manchester. These new routes form part of a long-term deal reached between Emerald Airlines and Belfast City Airport to establish a new home-based carrier at the city-centre airport with ambitious growth plans and further new routes to be announced throughout 2022. Emerald has also established an airline company in Northern Ireland (Emerald Airlines UK Ltd) and has applied to the UK CAA for a UK AOC and Operating Licence.
Emerald Airlines will be operating the State subsidised Donegal-Dublin PSO route using Aer Lingus’ flight numbers and the Aer Lingus brand franchise with 72-seater ATR 72-600.
Cover photo by Frank Grealish/Irish Air Pics with thanks to Executive Helicopters and the staff at Donegal Airport and Emerald Airlines