Ryanair announces changes to Manchester service

3 September 2009

Ryanair has announced that it will switch/close 9 of its 10 Manchester routes to lower cost competitor airports in East Midlands, Leeds Bradford and Liverpool (from 1st Oct) after Manchester Airport refused to lower its charges to reflect the lower fares being paid by passengers in the current recession.

This move will result in the loss of 44 weekly Manchester flights, 600,000 passengers p.a. and up to 600 local jobs.

Ryanair had offered Manchester an additional 28 weekly flights and 400,000 new passengers which would have created 400 new jobs if the airport reduced its high charges.

Manchester Airport rejected this offer and Ryanair’s Manchester routes to/from Barcelona (Girona), Bremen, Brussels (Charleroi), Cagliari, Dusseldorf (Weeze), Frankfurt (Hahn), Marseille, Milan (Bergamo) and Shannon will cease from 1st October. Passengers affected will be emailed directly by Ryanair and provided with a full refund or the alternative of flying to some destinations from competing, lower cost airports in East Midlands, Leeds Bradford and Liverpool.

Ryanair has recently announced new bases at low cost airports in Leeds Bradford and Porto and will continue to grow routes and traffic at lower cost competitor airports to Manchester such as East Midlands, Leeds Bradford and Liverpool.

Ryanair’s Stephen McNamara said:

“Ryanair continues to lower fares to encourage travel, but with passengers paying lower fares airports must lower their charges – particularly high cost airports like Manchester, London (Stansted) and Dublin. Ryanair had offered new routes, traffic and growth to Manchester Airport but since they prefer to preserve their high cost base than to grow, Ryanair will now switch/close nine Manchester routes to East Midlands, Leeds Bradford and Liverpool from 1st October next resulting in the loss of 600,000 passengers p.a. and up to 600 jobs at Manchester.

“Ryanair will continue to grow at low cost airports which work with us to deliver the low fares required to keep passengers flying during this recession. Ryanair apologises to passengers affected by these cancelations and will contact them in the coming weeks to provide them with a full refund or a switch to similar flights to/from lower cost airports in the region.”

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