Michael O’Leary has found a friend in Edinburgh Airport as his budget airline, Ryanair, prepares to expand its operations at the Scottish facility.
The additional routes will augment Ryanair’s current roster with eight others, including winter flights to Barcelona in Spain, Munich in Germany, Oslo in Norway and Gdańsk in Poland.
Edinburgh and Ryanair have enjoyed a symbiotic relationship for a number of years, but the recent expansion marks a significant 42% increase in flights over the same period last year, when the airline offered just nine destinations.
Company representative Stephen McNamara hailed a “dramatic increase” in flights. The airline has also added routes to airports in Dusseldorf in Germany and Madrid in Spain.
Ryanair has been busy reshuffling its UK operations, drawing criticism from airport bosses and forcing some customers to alter their holiday plans. Earlier in the week, the airline moved many of its planes away from Manchester Airport, blaming excessive landing fees for its decision.
Many of Manchester’s planes are now idling on the apron at Edinburgh.
In celebration of the new routes, Ryanair is helping winter passengers "beat the recession” by offering millions of 99p seats. Add the obligatory taxes, however, and two adults flying from Edinburgh to Girona, Barcelona and back can expect to pay around £88, excluding baggage and handling fees (call it £110, with one suitcase).
The new routes come into effect on the 30th October (Lanzarote), 31st October (Tenerife), 3rd November (Barcelona, Brussels, Gdańsk) and the 4th November 2009 (Gran Canaria, Munich, Oslo).