Ryanair announced on September 3rd the start of thrice-weekly flights between Luxembourg and Toulouse airports. The new route is part of the carrier’s winter schedule and brings the number of non-stop Luxembourg routes to 13.
Toulouse is the eighth French route for Ryanair’s Luxembourg operations which began in November of 2016. Other destinations to the Republic include Ajaccio, Bastia, Biarritz, Bordeaux, Marseille, Nice, and Paris.
The carrier will use a B738 to operate the winter route on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. Writes ARGS, CEO of LUX René Steinhaus said,
“Toulouse is the capital of Occitania and nowadays known as the capital of the air space industry. It is an important addition to our more than 80 destinations.”
In 2016, Ryanair embedded itself in the heart of Europe and began to launch routes from Luxembourg. The carrier began with a daily flight between LUX and Stansted. Soon to follow was a five-weekly Porto service. The budget carrier then bolstered its presence with summer routes to Madrid, Lisbon and Milan Bergamo the following year.
At the same time, LUX saw a strong growth of passenger and cargo traffic throughout 2016 and ’17. This came as the economy of Europe recovered from previous visits to the doldrums. In 2018, Luxembourg Airport welcomed over four million passengers.
Luxair remains by far the largest airline at the airport, with 1.84 million passengers reportedly serviced in 2017. Unsurprisingly, Ryanair now follows in second place. In its first full year of operations, the carrier served 364.000 passengers.
In spite of news of a downturn in fortunes, the latest figures released by Ryanair show significant growth. Furthermore, the recent pilots’ strike has done nothing to dampen the enthusiasm of boss Michael O’Leary. He was recently promoted to CEO of the Ryanair Group, this in tandem with the announcement of the loss of 900 jobs from the company’s payroll.
In August we reported O’Leary’s successor as CEO of the airline to be Eddie Wilson.
In fact, the carrier revealed it was able to operate the entirety of its UK manifest despite last week’s strikes and a general malaise among its long-suffering workers. The second of three stoppages took place between September 2nd and 4th.
The reported difficulties Ryanair has faced in recent months are increasingly common among other airlines. High fuel prices, stiff competition and the grounding of Boeing’s 737 MAX have stunted growth in the aviation industry, especially in Europe.
However, in June of this year, the Telegraph revealed Ryanair’s intention to launch a new Maltese airline called Malta Air. Malta Air will operate all 61 routes from Malta International Airport; those currently served by Ryanair’s fleet.
The Maltese government will be a majority stakeholder in the airline which, it is hoped, will generate tourist income for the country.
According to the Telegraph, Malta’s tourism minister Konrad Mizzi said, “The setting up of Malta Air will go a long way for the better sustainability of the tourism industry as well as maintaining its growth momentum.”
Of the new airline, O’Leary added,
“Malta Air will proudly fly the Maltese name and flag to over 60 destinations across Europe and North Africa as we look to grow our Maltese-based fleet, routes, traffic and jobs over the next three years.”