GIRONA – After several years of minimal activity, Ryanair has announced it will increase frequencies at Girona airport by 70%.
The Irish airline is also expanding to El Prat, Barcelona, with four new routes to Trieste (Italy), Cork (Ireland), Ouarzazate (Morocco) and Gdansk (Poland).
With winter approaching, Ryanair will base two aircraft at Vilobí d’Onyar (Selva) airport in Girona, marking a significant increase in operations. Five new routes and 42 weekly frequencies will be added. At Barcelona-El Prat the number of routes will amount to 62, which is four more than the previous year.
Ryanair aims to end the fiscal year, which runs from April 1, 2023 to March 31, 2024, with 9.8 million passengers carried (8.5 million in Barcelona and 1.3 million in Girona). Only summer flights are available from Reus.
Winter season presentation
Ryanair has presented its winter season in Girona, where the airline will achieve its greatest growth. According to Ryanair’s spokesperson for Spain, Portugal, France and Marrakech, Elena Cabrera, the choice of Girona is a sign of commitment to this airport and region. “We want to consolidate what we have and continue to grow. We have had a good summer, with high load factors for flights to and from Girona,” said Cabrera.
Vilobí d’Onyar Airport will serve as a base this winter with nine routes to destinations such as Baden-Baden and Düsseldorf (Germany), London and Birmingham (UK), Krakow (Poland), Pisa (Italy), Marrakech (Morocco), Belfast (Northern Ireland) and Brussels (Belgium), with a total of 42 weekly frequencies.
Cabrera emphasises that being a base creates new jobs, with an estimated 1,000 direct and 45 indirect jobs. This winter season, Ryanair will offer 210,000 seats with the aim of transporting 1.3 million passengers. She also recalls that on December 2, Ryanair will have been active in Spain for 21 years, since the first Girona-Frankfurt route. During this period, the company transported 47 million passengers.
Ryanair and Girona
Ryanair entered the airport when it was carrying just 500,000 passengers a year, peaking in 2008 with 5.5 million passengers. The opening of operations at El Prat led to a decline in Girona, exacerbated by the crisis. This year they expect to welcome 1.6 million passengers and by 2024 they hope to reach 2 million.
Ryanair in Spain
Ryanair plans to carry 185.5 million passengers across its network this year. In Spain, the company flies from 27 airports, with 76 aircraft stationed at 11 bases, twelve more than last winter. With more than 40 new routes, they expect to transport 54 million passengers in Spain.