Earlier this year, it was reported that Aer Lingus was examining operating transatlantic flights from the United Kingdom. Following a DOT filing, we now know which routes across the pond the airline plans to serve.
The transatlantic corridor has always been a lucrative route for airlines, particularly on London’s route to New York. As such, it is no surprise to see that airlines such as JetBlue are keen to take a piece of the pie. Recently, travel on the route has been suppressed by a US travel ban. Despite this, Aer Lingus still intends to launch UK-US flights.
What do we know?
Yesterday Aer Lingus filed with the DOT for permission to launch flights on a selection of UK-US routes. The flights would be operated by Aer Lingus (U.K.) Limited, which is currently seeking an Air Operator Certificate from the UK Civil Aviation Authority. It expects to receive this in February 2021.
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Aer Lingus is seeking permission to launch flights on the UK-US corridor. However, these won’t just be Aer Lingus flights. Aer Lingus UK would use the EI airline code on its flights. It has also asked for permission to use the British Airways designator code on such flights, although the airline is not requesting any codeshare approvals at this time.
Two Airbus A330s in Manchester
In its filing, Aer Lingus explains that it will be using two Airbus A330-300s on the routes between the UK and US. These aircraft are EI-EDY and EI-ELA. They are aged 11.6 years and 10.8 years, respectively.
Before the launch of flights, Aer Lingus UK would reregister these aircraft on the UK’s G aircraft registry. Aer Lingus this year took delivery of Airbus’ last non-neo A330. There had been talk that Aer Lingus would also operate A321LRs out of Manchester.
The new subsidiary airline would seek to operate services out of Manchester to New York, Orlando, and Boston. Aer Lingus UK would seek to fly to New York daily all year. Meanwhile, Orlando would be operated daily in the summer and four times a week in the winter. Finally, flights to Boston would be daily in the summer.
Virgin Atlantic competition
The collapse of Thomas Cook led to a decrease in non-stop options departing Manchester. Indeed, according to Aer Lingus UK’s application, all non-stop routes to the US from Manchester in 2021 will be operated by Virgin Atlantic, accounting for 70% of peak summer capacity.
The airline will directly compete with Virgin Atlantic on the route from Manchester to New York and Orlando. The route to Boston is currently unserved, according to Aer Lingus’ filing.
Would you fly with Aer Lingus from Manchester to the United States? Let us know what you think and why in the comments!