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Aer Lingus announces major long-haul expansion, creating more than 200 jobs

Aer Lingus has announced two brand new routes linking Dublin and Shannon to airports in America and Canada from April 2014.
There will be a year-round direct service between Dublin and San Francisco from April, 2014. There will be five services per week which will be operated by the Airbus A330 wide-body aircraft.

There will be a Boeing B757 service to Canada during the summer season and up to four weekly services will operate in winter.

Two Boeing B757 aircrafts will be based in Shannon so existing flights to Boston and New York can run more frequently. Year-round connections from Shannon to the east-coast will be introduced. This expansion will directly support more than 200 new jobs.

This growth plan will bring Aer Lingus’ long haul schedule to 10 daily transatlantic services, connecting Ireland and Europe to cities throughout North America and Canada. Passengers from England and Scotland will see benefits: they can now get a flight from Edinburgh to Dublin or a flight from Manchester to Dublin and travel on to various new destinations in America and Canada.

Christoph Mueller, Aer Lingus’ Chief Executive, said: "This expansion is extremely positive news for Aer Lingus and for the broader economy in terms of business, tourism and employment. Our transatlantic capacity will increase by 24% in 2014 and this expansion will directly support more than 200 jobs within Aer Lingus and our partner airline ASL Aviation Group."

Our operation of the San Francisco route will strengthen Ireland’s ties with Silicon Valley (whose technology companies are often headquartered in Dublin) and encourage Ireland’s development as a technology hub for Europe. Toronto is popular with tourists and is home to a large Irish community, so we look forward to welcoming them on board. We are confident that the increased number of flights from Shannon to New York and Boston will bring additional tourists to the Western region."

Leo Varadkar TD, Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, said: "This announcement of new services by Aer Lingus is fantastic news. This Government has always sought to improve air access to key tourism and business markets like the US and Canada. The return of the direct air service to the US west coast is particularly important and I’m very happy to see the route being filled by an Irish airline."

Aer Lingus will wet lease three Boeing 757 aircrafts from ASL Aviation Group which will be configured with an economy and business class cabin. Business travellers can expect gourmet meals, sleeper seats and an extensive in-flight entertainment selection.

Hugh Flynn, Chief Executive ASL Aviation Group said: "We are delighted to partner with Aer Lingus in bringing renowned excellent service to an increasing number of business and leisure passengers on new and existing routes. We believe the combination of two prominent Irish aviation companies brings a competitive dimension to the market and significantly increases economic opportunity for Ireland."
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