Ryanair to begin flying from Belfast again as it becomes first airline to carry 100 million passenger in one year
Michael O'Leary's budget airline, Ryanair, has announced that it will begin flying to Belfast again as it became the first airline to carry over 100 million passengers in one year.
In a statement released to the Irish Stock Exchange, the airline revealed that passengers had grown by 25pc in December of 2015 when compared with the same month in the year previous.
In December Ryanair had 7.5 million passengers, representing an increase of 1.5 million passengers from December of 2014.
Speaking about the growth, Ryanair's Kenny Jacobs, said that recent terrorist attacks had seen fare prices fall.
"On the back of lower fares in December (following the terrorist events in Paris and Brussels), Ryanair's monthly traffic grew by 25pc to 7.5 million customers, while our load factor jumped 3pc points to 91pc.
"Our traffic growth over the past two years has been remarkable, rising by 50pc over our December 2013 traffic figure of 5.0 million," Mr Jacobs said.
"We are pleased that over 101 million international customers chose to fly with Ryanair in 2015, as we became the first airline to reach this international traffic landmark," he said.
Speaking on RTÉ's Morning Ireland, Mr Jacobs described passing 100m customers as a great milestone and also announced the airline's intention to establish Belfast as its 77th base.
While Mr Jacobs was short on the details of the announcement he described it as a 'logical' step.
"We used to fly to Belfast previously it's a logical thing for us to do because with Dublin Airport being about 75 minutes away from Belfast, of course you'd expect that there are a huge number of Northern Irish residents who are already flying with us from Dublin and also Derry.
"We're going to be announcing that we're going to be flying from Aldergrove again. We won't be giving out specifics on the routes yet but it's a logical thing - it's only up the road," Mr Jacobs said.