Belfast Telegraph

Aer Lingus to move to Belfast City

Aer Lingus is to move to George Best Belfast City Airport in the autumn after five years at Belfast International.

The Irish carrier will base two aircraft at the City Airport during the winter and three during the summer, a spokeswoman for the company said.

"Northern Ireland's vital London connections are secure with Aer Lingus," said Christoph Mueller, the airline's chief executive.

Aer Lingus will begin flying from Belfast City Airport on October 28. Customers with existing bookings from Belfast International to London Heathrow for dates after the switch will be contacted in the coming days.

A new-look winter schedule for 2012 targets key routes for business, leisure and transfer traffic, in and out of London Heathrow and London Gatwick.

There will be three flights daily to each airport in each direction.

The summer schedule, which begins from the end of March 2013, will operate daily flights to two sun destinations, Malaga and Faro, in addition to the three daily rotations each to London Heathrow and Gatwick.

Mr Mueller added: "This is a commercial decision, delivering value for our customers and the company. George Best Belfast City Airport delivers a compelling location and a strong history of business flying.

"We believe the move will appeal to the 600,000-plus passengers annually who fly with us and especially the business traveller who now has a choice of two London airports with Aer Lingus."

Mr Mueller said the 100 jobs created in the £100 million investment made by Aer Lingus in Northern Ireland five years ago remained secure. He said: "We remain committed to the Northern Ireland marketplace, Jobs are secured in this move and indeed our plans for new routes in the future may see employment and investment increase."

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