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Eoghan Corry Talks Travel – September 2022

Ryanair and Aer Lingus

Flight cancellations, lost luggage, lack of hotel beds and more – Eoghan Corry talks travel this month. 

It has been a summer, says Eoghan Corry. Nobody was sure what shape the holiday season would take, but the travel industry, always full of surprises, threw in a few extra twists for us this year. So there is lots of things to ruminate about as we face into the last few weeks of the summer schedules. Rumination with a view, if you like. 

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1. Ryanair are roaring.

Eoghan Corry's talking points on Ryanair

“Fortune favours the bold,” is a slogan that could have been thought up by Michael O’Leary. Not many, at least outside the control room in Swords anticipated the scale of Ryanair’s passenger growth in summer 2022.
 
The headline figures compared with 2019 show two things: Ryanair’s readiness to snap up the business of returnees to travel and the caution of the opposition. Ryanair’s policy of keeping its aircraft certified, its pilots licensed and its cabin crew employed through Covid meant that it did not hit the staffing crisis faced by almost everyone else on the departure board.
 

 

 
It meant that Ryanair, for a time during summer at least, were the second busiest airline in the world. And because it flies point to point and does not do transfers, it did not get caught up in the lottery of lost bags.

Ryanair monthly passenger rate increases got bigger as their rivals floundered in the heat of summer, 5.4% ahead of 2019 in April, 9.2% in May, then 12% 13.5% and 13.4% in June, July and August, at a time most airlines are expecting to report lower numbers than three summers ago.
 

 

 
What next? An ambitious schedule has already been published for 2023. Ryanair is anticipating two new aircraft a week between now and March, although Boeing seem to be able to deliver only half that number unless something improves in Seattle.
 
It is well positioned to face a further rise in fuel price this winter, and willingness to turn its back on Frankfurt Main and Zaventum shows it is still prepared to pull out of an airport deal if the terms are not right.
 

 

 
That means more of the same: cheap headline prices, but be prepared to be shaken down on ancillaries. Some of the fares on offer for summer 2023 are surprisingly high. And Christmas is off the scale.

Read: Book Ryanair flights with 50% deposit on family fares
 

 

 

2. Lingus are not laggards.

talking points on Aer Lingus with Eoghan Corry

When BA, Lufthansa Air France and Easyjet assessed the rosters in May and made the call to cancel thousands of scheduled flights, Aer Lingus decided not to do so and flew straight into a series of well publicised sickness shortages.
 

 

 
The short term cancellations caused by staff absences, at their peak, caused disruption that was no greater than a moderate weather event. The problem was that 27% of their flight cancellations were at less than six hours’ notice, bad news for both airline and passengers.

Another difference was that Aer Lingus publicised their problems, while Air France, American, BA, Eurowings, United, SAS and Westjet quietly cancelled without drawing attention to themselves.
 

 

 
When they thought nothing else could go wrong, someone in England dug up the cable that links the booking reference to the cloud, 800 gigabytes of oppression. There is an ongoing problem for Aer Lingus, the interface between their once state of the art Astral system and the front end website and app.

For the future: expect earlier cancellations and (maybe) fewer press releases.
 

 

 

3. Cold cases.

Eoghan Corry talks lost luggage

The baggage mountain in Dublin airport became a social media meme of its own this summer. Musicians, golfers, brides and even a dead parent’s ashes were all sucked into it at some stage, like an otherworld villain from a 1950s B movie.
 

 

 
Many, though not all of the problems, were caused by bags that failed to make the transfer flight in Heathrow, Amsterdam and, especially Toronto, among other places.

Baggage handlers were slow to staff up and thwarted by red tape. The issue now is that the problem is likely to taper on, with Heathrow saying their woes will spill on until next summer.
 

 

 
Our tech-heavy baggage system was designed for efficient airline operations and enough beefy men to actually lift the bags. Neither situation prevails at the moment.

Read: How to prevent lost luggage when travelling
 

 

 

4. Hotels are overheated.

hotel demand in Ireland

Forget the burgeoning energy bill. It is hot in the lobby. Dublin’s hotels went into the recover knowing they were about 3,500 rooms short of demand.

They also had up to 80% of their stock already taken with deferrals (about 25%), tour ops (35%) and government contracts (about 17%) while 2.4% of hotels chose not to reopen at all. That left 6% of rooms, one sixteenth of the total, for walk in business.
 

 

 
To ramp the temperature up further, it was a summer of 30 concerts, three times the number we danced at 2019, with the likes of the Eagles and Garth Brooks likely to draw the very cohort of customers hotels spend a lot of their marketing budgets trying to attract.
 

 

 
All this was not going to end well, and country hotels are blaming their cosmopolitan colleagues for the PR disaster that ensued. The hoteliers knew the figures before the first check in of summer. How did they allow it to go so wrong so quickly?
 

 

 

5. Cruising’s breakers yard blues.

Celebrity Beyond

We remember, if not always fondly, the iconic budget cruise ships of the past. Okay, some of these elderly maidens were short on space, long on years and in need of a makeover, but for many Irish people they provided their first cruise.

This summer they all paraded off to the breakers’ yard, the CMV Magellan and Marco Polo and Fred Olsen’s Boudicca, while Black Watch has become an accommodation ship.
 

 

 
Royal Caribbean’s original Monarch and Sovereign of the Seas, later sailing for Pullmantur, also tugged off to Davy Jones’ locker, or as Luke Kelly used to sing, Fiddler’s Green.
 

 

 
While there is plenty of excitement at sea this autumn, with 17 new ships including the marquee launches of RCCL’s Wonder of the Seas, Celebrity Beyond and Norwegian’s Prima, Princess announcing its new Sphere-class and MSC Seascape to follow in a few weeks, the crisis that hit cruising more than other aspects of travel has cleared the quays of the smaller older ships that used to offer low budget options.
 
Read: How to choose the right cruise for you
 

 

 

6. Covid hasn’t gone away (you know).

travel updates on summer travel

Few things cause as much dismay at a departure gate as the unexpected news that a flight still requires masks., A surprising number still do. Germany is the latest to drop masking requirements on flights, next Saturday. But remember Asia is still largely closed, Africa and South America still complicated, and local restrictions can still bite us in the earlobes.
 

 

 
Travel insurance has never been as important as now. Make sure it covers covid, including the isolation period before you fly home.

One of the distractions of the summer is the complication experienced by passengers boarding cruise ships, whose Covid insurance was deemed inadequate by the gangway attendants. Being right is no use if you lose the argument as you walk the plank.
 

 

 

7. Garda blues about passports.

Irish passport

Nobody could say it aloud, but when the great passport delay hit the headlines, one body of gentlemen were to blame. Finding the Garda that signed the witness form for first time applicants proved as elusive as the first salmon catch on the Moy.
 

 

 
While all the systems that we use to issue passports have been updated, and sideshows such as a printing machine in Cork hit the headlines, the logjam was caused by the old fashioned phone call to a Garda who was not due to be rostered until Tuesday next or has been promoted to a bigger job.
 

 

 
There is no certainty the window dressing of “closer liaison” will solve this problem. Get that application in as soon as the new-born baby arrives.
 

 

 

8. Three strikes and we are all out.

cancelled flights

The summer round aviation strikes were more about headlines than about the havoc those promised. Ryanair’s Med-based cabin crew strikes were staged by tiny unions who did not have the muscle to cause enough cancelations to impact their schedule. SAS pilots and Belgian cabin crew were the exceptions, but neither affected mainstream holiday destinations.
 

 

 
An exception is the French air traffic control. Three unions are competing in terms of militancy and there is an uncertain political balance. This means that we can expect half of the flights to and from France and a significant number of overflights to places like Reus to be affected by two further strikes.
 

 

 
There is nothing airlines can do about this except cancel the required 50p% of their schedule and appeal to Brussels to allow neighbouring countries take command of overflights. It should not be that difficult.

Eoghan Corry

 

Eoghan Corry

Travel News and Reviews

New Destinations from Dublin Airport for 2019

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Every year there seems to be a host of new travel hot spots to choose from. I have compiled a little run through of some of the new destinations from Dublin Airport for summer 2019. Hopefully it will light a little spark of inspiration for you to go explore…

 

There is plenty to sink your teeth into in the list below. With people travelling more than ever, it is great to see some of lesser known gems receive the attention and appreciation they deserve. If you’re looking for something brimming with culture then Bordeaux and Thessaloniki could be right up your street. Frankfurt is a city that is extremely modern and a lot of fun for a weekend away. If you’re the spiritual type, an excursion to Lourdes is something that is might be high on your list. I also have super long haul options as well as UK destinations if you’re looking for something a bit closer to home.

 

1. Bordeaux – France

If you’re wine lover, a trip to Bordeaux should tickle your fancy. This beautiful city is a hub for wine growing and it really does ooze class. The Place de la Bourse is the main landmark square and if you’re lucky with the weather, you can see a really cool reflection in the square’s pool on a clear evening. The city’s architecture is influenced by a couple of different styles such as Gothic and Romanesque which makes for a beautiful mix. The Cité du Vin is a fantastic wine museum that offers the chance to enjoy some tasting at certain parts of the tour so be sure to check that out too. Why not hire a car and discover some of the vineyards in the surrounding countryside? The stunning town of Saint-Emilion is only an hour away……

New Destinations from Dublin Airport - Bordeaux

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2. Bournemouth – England

Bournemouth is a beautiful little seaside resort along the English south coast. It has plenty of appeal for both young and old alike as there are some fantastic family activities at Bournemouth Pier and in Splashdown Waterpark. If you’re looking for a thriving nightlife, The Triangle has loads of options for dining, culture and a fun night out. The standout features of Bournemouth would have to be the area’s unquestionable natural beauty. Brownsea Island is an incredibly peaceful area and ideal for hikers looking to escape for a day of exploring.

New Destinations from Dublin Airport - Bournemouth

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3. Cagliari – Italy

If you’ve never heard of the city of Cagliari before, you definitely would have heard of the island of Sardinia, Cagliari is the island’s capital and has all the hallmarks of a charming Italian holiday. There are multiple fine examples of how the Italian people proudly preserve their heritage.

The Museo Archeologico Nazionale di Cagliari (don’t think I’ll need to translate that one) has loads of cool artefacts from the Roman and Byzantine periods. The Torre del’Elefante is worth visiting too. The 14th century tower fortification offers you a picturesque view of the city and it’s lovely coastline. Aside from what I’ve already mentioned, Sardinia is traditionally a destination for beach holidays so a direct flight to Cagliari from Dublin airport opens up the chance for a beach holiday also. 🙂

New Destinations from Dublin Airport - Cagliari

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4. Frankfurt – Germany

Frankfurt is a hub of another description. Sitting on the banks of the river Main, the city itself is often known as Mainhattan due to its thriving financial industries and skyline. The city itself is a lot of fun for visitors too. As much as I love modernity, my favourite part of the city though has to be Bornheim. There are so many trendy streets that are a bit more traditional with a timber exterior. These streets are packed with cosy and stylish restaurants or bars.

Another thing I love is an area within a city where you can enjoy some greenery to escape the hustle and bustle. The Palmengarten hits the nail on the head for exactly this reason. Also German people are incredibly fond of flea markets so if you head down to Kleinmarkthalle you’ll be able to pick up some brilliant bargains.

New Destinations from Dublin Airport - Frankfurt

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5. Gothenburg – Sweden

Gothenburg, like most other Scandinavian cities possesses the perfect balance of urban and natural beauty. In the peak summer months you can expect up to eighteen hours of sunlight. If you like your seafood, Feskekôrka is a well known seafood market where you can sample the local produce in one of two fabulous restaurants.

If you like your nightlife, you will have to visit Haga as it has loads of great bars. Also the Gothenburg Botanical Garden is a beautifully maintained area that will help clear the head. My favourite thing about Gothenburg though is Universeum. It is an extremely large science centre with an indoor rainforest for you to enjoy. How cool is that?!

New Destinations from Dublin Airport - Gothenburg

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6. Lourdes – France

Lourdes serves quite a specific purpose in the lives of most Irish people. An area widely known in Catholic circles for being a famous pilgrimage, the decision to open up a direct route between Dublin and Lourdes will surely see huge demand. The city attracts millions of people on an annual basis to the Grotto of the Apparitions, where the Virgin Mary was said to have appeared to a local woman in 1858.

Aside from a religious element, Lourdes and it’s surrounding countryside is stunning. Foothills and and cycling trails make for fantastic outdoor options with the Pic du Jer offering you an expansive vantage point over the Pyrenees.

New Destinations from Dublin Airport - Lourdes

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7. Luxembourg

The country of Luxembourg looks like it was built for the purpose of fitting inside of a snowglobe. It’s compact nature make it a perfect place to head off for a couple of days. It’s a beautiful summer destination also an you can cover most of Luxembourg city by foot in a few days. Vianden Castle is well worth visiting and walking through the charming streets will expose you to a brilliant mix of architecture and cuisines. As it shares a border with Belgium, France and Germany, it’s fair to say that each country’s influence on Luxembourg can be felt for one reason or another (all good though thankfully).

New Destinations from Dublin Airport - Luxembourg

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8. London Southend – England

Ryanair’s new route between Dublin and London Southend gives you yet another flight option to visit the magnificent city of London. Whatever you might look for in a city break, London will hit the spot. My favourite experience of London where the Emirates Cable Car which is a nice alternative to the London Eye. Taking a boat tour along the Thames allows you to see a lot of the city and get a bit of backstory too.

St. James Park and Hyde Park are brilliant for a stroll and there are so many cool and trendy neighbourhoods where something new can be discovered. Stratford is an area that is brilliant for shopping and you’re also directly across from the Olympic Stadium and old Olympic Park too.

New Destinations from Dublin Airport - London Southend

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9. Thessaloniki – Greece

Thessaloniki is probably not the first place you would think of when it comes to possibilities for city breaks. This should definitely change next year as it is easier than ever to reach this Greek destination. This is thanks to Ryanair adding it to their list of routes from Dublin in summer of 2019. Now you’ll be able to enjoy this beautiful port city that sits along the Aegean Sea. The premier places to check out in Thessaloniki would be the Aristotelous Square where you can enjoy some fabulous Greek cuisine and the White Tower of Thessaloniki which is the city’s most iconic landmark.

New Destinations from Dublin Airport - Thessaloniki

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10. Zagreb – Croatia

The Croatian capital offers visitors a fantastically diverse city break experience. Ban Josip Jelačić Square is the city’s beating heart and is a great place to stop for a coffee and some people watching. Dolac Market will allow you to sample some fresh local produce and see how the locals live. If you’re fond of an outdoors adventure, Medvenica is a forested peak that stands over 1000m tall and offers you a beautiful view of the surrounding area. This city has been influenced by many different architectural styles over the years and that only adds to its appeal. Flying here is easier than ever as there are direct flights to Zagreb with Croatia Airlines.

New Desintations from Dublin Airport - Zagreb

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11. Calgary – Canada

A flight to Calgary unlocks so many possibilities for a dream holiday. In the surrounding areas you can find the stunning Banff National Park, enjoy the stunning landscapes of the Rocky Mountains, have a road trip to Vancouver or even just take in the city of Calgary itself.  WestJet have recently announced that they will be running direct flights from Dublin to Calgary from April in 2019. This means that one of the most beautiful parts of the world is now more easily accessible than ever. If that’s not enough motivation to go exploring then I don’t know what is. 🙂

new destinations from dublin airport calgary

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12. Minneapolis – USA

The city of Minneapolis is an art lover’s dream.The world famous Walker Art Center offers a fascinating collection of contemporary art and just a stone’s throw away, you will also find the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden. There are also plenty of activities for lovers of the great outdoors. Minnehaha Park is a brilliant city park that offers biking and even waterfalls too. Lake Harriet is a great place for sailing in the summer months and also the Stone Arch Bridge is the perfect place for a photo op.

New Destinations from Dublin Airport - Minneapolis

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13. Montreal – Canada

Montréal is simply a stunning city. Named after Mt. Royal, a mountain whose peak sits right in the heart of the city, Montréal offers the perfect balance of urban and natural beauty. Visiting the peak offers you a brilliant view of the cityscapes. Visiting the Montréal Botanic Gardens is well worth your time also. Notre-Dame Basilica is an architectural marvel and Downtown Montréal is an urban metropolis its own right. You should be prepared that this is a predominantly French speaking region. It is definitely worth your consideration since Aer Lingus announced direct flights to commence next Summer.

New Destinations from Dublin Airport - Montreal

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14. Split – Croatia

Situated along Croatia’s Dalmatian Coast, this gorgeous city is the perfect place for a summer holiday. The Marjan Forest Park is an elevated peak on the outskirts of the city that offers you some phenomenal views of the city and wider landscape. Beach Bene offers you the picturesque beach that every sun holiday needs. There are also loads of well preserved examples of Roman Architecture such as Diocletian’s Palace; a former residence and fortress of a Roman Emperor.

New Destinations from Dublin - Split

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15. Bodrum – Turkey

There are few things more beautiful in this world than the various coastlines that surround the Aegean Sea. One of the prime examples of this would be the destination of Bodrum in Turkey. There are lots of stunning luxurious resorts in Bodrum that are suited to all travelling parties. If you’re travelling with children then you should check out Bodrum Aquapark. The dibeklih Culture and Art Village is an extremely trendy spot for some shopping and dining. The city as a whole excellently preserves its rich heritage that only contributes to the chilled out atmosphere of the area.

New Destinations from Dublin - Bodrum

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16. Dubrovnik – Croatia

This may not necessarily be a new route as Aer Lingus already flew here, but with Ryanair adding this route to their summer schedule for 2019, it is definitely worth inclusion. The extra plane seats will mean that more Irish holidaymakers will be able to enjoy this beautiful city than ever before. The city has had a bit of spotlight on it since Game of Thrones used it as one of their primary shooting locations and it is just as beautiful in person. Summers in Dubrovnik are an absolute enjoy as it’s Old Town is filled with open air performers of music and theatre. There is an infectious atmosphere as visitors all over the world enjoy this Croatian gem.

New Destinations from Dublin - Dubrovnik

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If 2018 passed you by, don’t let 2019 suffer the same fate. I’m very much of the opinion that there is so much to be discovered on this planet. Hopefully something within this article has convinced of you the same. Happy Travels!

 

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Martin McKenna – The Travel Expert Team

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FeaturedTravel Tips

10 Things To Do In Dublin Airport Before You Fly!

MAC

It is amazing what you can find out with a little research. I would consider myself a frequent traveller and I didn’t even know many of these services were available. Here are 10 things to do in Dublin Airport before you fly. I’m really looking forward to my next trip so I can try some!

 

Get your make up done.

Many people don’t know this but you can get your make up done in MAC for €25. You can pre book a 30 minute session and the cost is redeemable against any MAC purchase – sounds like no brainer to me! Hence the above pic – I tried it recently and it was great! Call +35319446431 (T1) or +35319440754 ( T2) to make an appointment.

Top ten things to do in Dublin airport before you fly

 

Shop till you drop!

Dublin airport has over 100 different brands and a great variety of shops to suit everyone. You will find fragrances are at least 20% cheaper and cosmetics at least 15% cheaper than downtown prices. There are designer shops like LK Bennett, Hugo Boss, cool high street stores like Superdry and one of my personal favourites, Parfois. This Portuguese chain has such good value accessories.  Remember you can shop and collect on your return which is ideal for gifts that you don’t want to carry with you.  Click here for a full list of all shops in both terminals.

Top ten things to do in Dublin airport before you fly

 

Enjoy a bite to eat.

Diep le Shaker, Gourmet Burger kitchen, the chocolate lounge and even a food market,  you name it, it’s here. There are also plenty of fast food and delicious deli options for a quick bite. Click here for the full list of restaurants in both terminals.

Top ten things to do in Dublin airport before you fly

 

Get a massage.

Looking for something to calm the nerves before your flight – try a complimentary hand and arm massage from Jo Malone! This sounds like heaven to me and I can’t wait to try it. I’m thinking the scent will last for the whole flight ❤  Book your appointment by calling +35319446434 (T1) or +35319440411 (T2).

Top ten things to do in Dublin airport before you fly

 

Book the executive lounge

For €25 you can avail of three hours at the executive lounge, regardless of what ticket you have. Many people think these lounges are only for business class passengers – they are not! You can enjoy complimentary snacks, drinks, newspapers and magazines with unlimited free wifi. Click here for more details.

Top ten things to do in Dublin airport before you fly

 

Get your brows done.

Bobbi Brown offers seven How To services. From how to do the perfect smokey eye, how to look less tired and my favourite, how to get ready in five minutes!. They will also show you how to do your brows and advise you on the best products to use. Just show up at their counter, no need to make an appointment and the best part -it’s free of charge too!

Weekend in Vegas

 

Have a drink

Dublin airport offers everything from al fresco drinks at the Garden Terrace (T1) to the stylish Flutes champagne bar in T2. There are no shortage of watering holes to send you on your way! See the full list here.

Top ten things to do in Dublin airport before you fly

 

Get your hair done.

If you are like me, you are never fully ready before you walk out the door. Banish the bad hair day by trying one of Aveda’s three minute solutions. They can solve frizz, flat, curls and flyaway hair. If you have an organised travelling companion, they can have a scalp and shoulder massage with some relaxing Aveda tea while you get your hair done!

Weekend in Vegas

 

Especially for the boys!

Get your shoes shined, play a game of pool in the Oak café bar (T2), or simply chill out and do some plane spotting in the Slaney Bar ( T2). Of course you can always do any of the above too!

Top ten things to do in Dublin airport before you fly

 

Book the fast track

In order to have the time to enjoy all the fantastic facilities that Dublin airport offers, book the fast track. From €5.99 – €7.99 ( depending on time ) you can skip the security queue and you will also receive 10% off when you shop in the Loop! Click here to book.

 

Like my travel tips ? Click here for more.

 

Sarah

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New Routes from Irish Airports in 2016

Airport

Tired of the same old holiday destinations? Check out the new routes from Irish airports in 2016 and try something new this year!

 

Dublin Airport

We are finally seeing some new longhaul routes from Ireland, something that will be widely welcomed by Irish holidaymakers. Falcon / Thomson holidays will operate a dreamliner aircraft direct to Cancun (Mexico) and Montego Bay (Jamaica) while Air Canada Rouge will offer direct flights to Vancouver for the first time.  Aer Lingus have also introduced direct flights to more US destinations,  Newark, Los Angeles and the surprise choice, Hartford. Ethiopian Airlines are also flying direct to Los Angeles so there should be plenty of choice for people looking to get to the Sunshine State this year. Blue Air will be flying to Cluj (Romania), Ryanair will operate to the Spanish coastal city, Vigo and Aer Lingus will fly to Montpellier in France. There are also extra flights to Athens with Aegean Airlines and Ryanair, perhaps Athens will be on many peoples city break list this year? Aegean Airlines will also be offering online connections to the bucket list destinations of Santorini and Mykonos. And finally, Aer Lingus have added capacity to the popular holiday destinations of Pisa and Murcia, until now these were served by Ryanair only.

Mexico, one of the new routes from Ireland in 2016, by The Travel Expert
Mexico

Cork Airport

Cork airport has announced 400, 000 additional seats available for 2016 and the airport was recently named as one of Europe’s best airports. New routes for 2016 include Cardiff, London City, Leeds Bradford in the UK and Dusseldorf, Germany. Families will welcome direct flights to Nantes and La Rochelle in France and Menorca in Spain, which is operated by Stein Travel. Direct flights to Madrid with Iberia Express should suit people looking for a short city break and Norwegian Air is hoping to fly from Cork to Boston, however this is still subject to US approval. There is also talk of a Cork – New York service in the near future – so watch this space!

Menorca, one of the new routes from Irish Airports in 2016 by The Travel Expert
Menorca

Knock Airport ( Ireland West)

Falcon / Thomson Holidays are flying direct to Salou for 2016, something that has delighted families living in the West of Ireland. The flight will operate weekly from the end of June until the 16th of August. Knock airport will also offer new direct services to the popular cities of Edinburgh and Birmingham this year.

Salou, one of the new routes from Irish Airports in 2016 by The Travel Expert
Salou

Shannon airport

While there are no new routes from Shannon in 2016, extra capacity has been announced to many holiday destinations such as Malaga (Costa del Sol) and Faro (Portugal) as well as popular routes such as Heathrow and New York. 2015 was the third successive year of passenger growth at Shannon airport and this trend will surely continue in 2016.

 

So there you have it, no excuses for resting on your laurels this year – go somewhere new in 2016!

 

Sarah

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Family HolidaysTravel Tips

9 Dublin Airport Tips You Need To Know Before You Fly

dublin airport

For some people who are not used to travelling the airport can be very stressful. Read my top airport tips below and get your holiday off to a great start.

 

  1. Weigh your luggage before you go!
  2. Passports, visa and all the important stuff.
  3. Check terminals, car parking, roadworks.
  4. Get to the airport early.
  5. Use the fast track.
  6. Check-in.
  7. Security screening
  8. Executive Lounges
  9. Before you board.

1. Weigh your luggage before you go!

airport tips

Before you go you should make sure you weigh your luggage to ensure you are within the weight limits for the particular airline you are travelling with. You don’t want to be one of those people at the top of the queue taking clothes out of one bag and placing them in another.
 

 

 
You will also want to avoid any excess baggage charges, as not only are these exorbitant, but usually you have to queue up at the ticket desk to pay them and then re queue to check in. This can be very stressful if you are short on time and the security queue is very long.
 

 

 

2. Passports, visas and all the important stuff.

airport tips

I think it goes without saying to make sure that your passports are valid, but you will also need to check the regulations of the country that you are travelling to. Passenger locator forms, as well as proof of vaccination may be required, and  some destinations require that your passport is valid for 6 months after your return date.
 

 

 
This is becoming more and more common with some European countries applying this rule as well as the USA and many long haul destinations.
 

 

 
If travelling to the USA make sure you have your ESTA in place, it is compulsory for everyone travelling to America now. Log on to https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov/esta/

I always recommend printing your documents, as well as keeping a digital copy, just incase they are mislaid.
 

 

 

3. Check terminals, car parking, roadworks

airport tips

You should check with AA road watch to ensure your planned journey is free of road works, sometimes the airport website will also have this mentioned in their news section.

Check which terminal you are departing from. As a general rule, Aer Lingus and long haul flights go from Terminal 2, and most other airlines from Terminal 1, but you need to check your travel documents to be sure.
 

 

 
Allow plenty of time if using the airport car parks, especially the long term ones, as some of these are 20 minutes from the airport terminal. The DAA airport website is very useful and have many top tips, details of airlines and their terminals,  plus the latest car park deals are available here.
 

 

 

4. Get to the airport early.

airport tips

There are many new restaurants open in our airports now now including Diep le Shaker, Gourmet Burger Kitchen and the fantastic food market – Marquette. Depending on the time of your flight it might be an idea to go to the airport early. It will stop you worrying about traffic, queues etc and allow you some time to enjoy a nice meal before you depart, or check out the shops at The Loop.
 

 

 

5. Use the Fast Track

use the fast track to save time at the airport

If you are short on time or have a particularly early flight – use the Fast Track facility. It’s a fantastic service that caters for a variety of travellers. If you don’t want to queue at security you can pay from €7.99 – €12.99 to use the fast track service. You also get a voucher for a free coffee, which can be purchased in many outlets before you board.

 

 

 

6. Check-in.

airport tips

Where possible always check-in online. Even if you still need to check in a bag, it usually guarantees you a shorter queue and seats together on the aircraft. If  travelling with Aer Lingus use the dedicated self check-in kiosks to weigh your own bags.
 

 

 
If you are travelling within Europe, you should arrive at the airport two hours before your flight departs, irrespective of whether you have checked in online or at the airport.
 

 

 
If you are travelling long haul this is should be increased to three hours. If travelling to the USA you will need to go through emigration at Dublin or Shannon airport, and therefore check-in times are 3 hours before departure. Remember you will still need to go through security even if you have checked-in online and in busy periods these queues can be long.
 

 

 

7. Security screening.

airport tips

Security is where everyone’s stress levels increase! I think it goes without saying not to pack sharp implements, but even kids toy guns, razors etc should never be in your hand luggage. Ideally pack all liquids in your checked baggage, but if you need to have them in your hand luggage, make sure that there are no liquids over 100ml, as they will be confiscated.
 

 

 
Some things are evidently liquid, like drinks and perfume, others are less obvious, like gels, pastes, lotions, toothpastes, hair gels, face creams, liquid cosmetic, deodorants and shaving foam. Any liquids that you have not checked in, and are below the 100ml limit should be placed in one clear plastic bag and separated from your bag on the trays provided.
 

 

 
Medication is allowed, but you may have to demonstrate that it is for medical purposes – I recommend a note from your doctor stating this. Similarly with baby’s bottles – you may have to drink them to prove they are indeed what you say they are.

Remember to remove outer jackets, belts, shoes, laptops from cases when you reach the passenger security screening area as this will speed things up.
 

 

 

 

8. Enjoy the Executive Lounges and additional facilities available

 

 
 
 
 
 
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You can use the Executive Lounge in Terminal 1 for up to two hours (regardless of what class of ticket you have) with complimentary drinks, snacks and newspapers from only €20 if booked online. The luxurious 51st &Green Lounge in Terminal 2 is €30, or complimentary if travelling business class.
 

 

 
There are also other genie services where you can book a family care attendant or chaperones if someone is travelling alone and needs help. All of these are available to book on the Dublin Airport Website, www.dublinairport.com.
 

 

 

9. Before you board

my top picks for airport shopping online

When you make it through the screening area, check the flight information screens to see which gate your flight is departing from. Sometimes gates can change for operational reasons.
 

 

 
If shopping in Duty free on the way out, make sure to use Shop and Collect system – they take care of your purchases and you don’t need to worry about the extra weight in your luggage, you simply pick them up when you return.

Take advantage of the ‘honest’ airplane water stops that are scattered around the terminal. Put €1 in the box provided, so you will have water when you board and stay hydrated for your journey.
 

 

 
Bon voyage!

 

Want to see more travel tips? Click here!

 

Sarah

The Travel Expert Sarah Slattery

 

 

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