Monday 19 February 2018

Ryanair cuts air fares to Spain by 7pc after attacks 'to keep people moving'

* Fares at the budget airline cut by up to 7pc

* Ryanair forecasts 10pc growth in passenger numbers in Spain this year

* Spain Economy Minister expects no significant impact on tourism

Michael O'Leary
Michael O'Leary Business Desk Business Desk

Ryanair has cut ticket prices for its flights to Spain to avoid any impact on demand from last week's attacks in Catalonia, the airline's CEO Michael O'Leary said on Thursday.

He said Ryanair, the largest carrier to Spain in terms of passengers, had "generally" not seen any impact on bookings to the country since Islamist militants killed 15 people last week in Barcelona and the seaside resort of Cambrils in Catalonia, northeastern Spain.

But Ryanair has reduced air fares to Spain by up to 7pc, in a similar precautionary step to the one it took after attacks in London, Paris and Brussels, O'Leary said.

"We lowered the fares to keep people moving," he told a news conference marking the opening of a new technical centre in Spain, which will create 250 jobs.

Spain's Economy Minister Luis de Guindos said on Thursday he did not expect the attacks to have any significant short-term impact on tourism, which accounts for about 11pc of Spain's economy.

O'Leary said Ryanair continued to be confident of growing in Spain despite heavy competition in some regions.

For the current year ending in March 2018, Ryanair has forecast growth in the country of around 10 percent to 38 million passengers.

Ryanair has a 17pc share of the Spanish air transport market, according to Spanish airport operator Aena.


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