Emerald Airlines  new operator on  Donegal – Dublin PSO air route

by Gazette Reporter
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Ireland’s newest airline, Emerald Airlines,  is to operate the government funded public service obligation air service between Donegal and Dublin airports under the Aer Lingus Regional brand, it was announced last week.

The current temporary contract operated by Amapola Flyg AB following the collapse of Stobart Air last June, expires on 25 February 2022.  The new contract with Emerald Airlines will operate from February 26 until February 2025 and may be extended for a further one-year period.

The award of the new contract to Emerald Airlines follows an EU public tendering process conducted by the Department of Transport in accordance with the requirements of EU Regulation 1008/2008, which allows PSOs to airports that serve peripheral or less developed regions.

Minister Eamon Ryan pointed out that this route would “provide vital connectivity for Donegal and the North-West region to Dublin. This route provides important reassurance for those who need to attend medical or other important appointments as well as supporting business and tourism in the region,” he added. 

Minister for State Hildegarde Naughton emphasised that the serive “would provide the people and businesses in the North-West with daily air services to Dublin, facilitating return trips within the day, and further international connectivity from Dublin airport through Emerald Airline’s partners.”

Conor McCarthy, CEO of Emerald Airlines said flights are available for booking now on www.aerlingus.com.

Emerald Airlines will be offering up to 2 flights daily each way linking Donegal and Dublin with convenient flight timings, which enable same-day trips to Dublin, and seamless connections with the Aer Lingus network from Dublin with a record number of seats.  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.

Emerald Airlines will be operating this route with Aer Lingus flight numbers and under the Aer Lingus brand using the 72-seater ATR72-600, which has a significant environmental advantage over other regional jets and turboprops in its class.  

PHOTO – Aer Lingus CEO Lynne Embleton with Emerald Airlines founder Conor McCarthy

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