Ryanair, the world’s favourite airline, has confirmed that the DAA airport monopoly has turned down Ryanair’s offer to grow its Shannon traffic from 300,000p.a. to 1.3m p.a. passengers over the next five years, proving yet again that Dublin Airport doesn’t care about Shannon and can’t/won’t deliver traffic growth at Shannon. The DAA has overseen the collapse of Shannon traffic from 3.6m passengers in 2007 to just 1.7m passengers in 2010:
Under a five year low cost agreement Ryanair grew its Shannon traffic from 400,000 to 1.9m in 2008/09 (prior to the Govt’s €10 tourist tax).
In April 2010 the DAA refused to extend this low cost base forcing Ryanair to cut traffic from 1.9m to 400,000p.a.
In Nov 2010 the DAA monopoly raised Shannon’s fees by 33% forcing Ryanair to further reduce its Shannon traffic from 400,000 to 300,000.
In 2010 Shannon’s traffic fell to 1.8m (from 2.8m in 2009) making it Europe’s worst performing airport.
In Jan 2011 Shannon’s traffic again fell by 37% as Aer Lingus closed its transatlantic operations for the winter months.
In Feb 2011 Ryanair offered the DAA 1m growth passengers at Shannon in return for the same discounts Aer Lingus enjoys at Dublin.
In March 2011 the DAA rejected Ryanair’s 1m traffic growth offer for Shannon.
The DAA’s response to Ryanair’s offer, which was that “no commercial airport in Europe could agree to these terms”, was patently untrue when the DAA’s Declan Collier already confirmed that it is giving these discount rebates to Aer Lingus at Dublin Airport, despite the fact that Aer Lingus delivers no growth at all.
Speaking in Shannon Ryanair’s Michael O’Leary said:
“Ryanair is the only airline willing and able to deliver dramatic new route and traffic growth at Shannon and the refusal by the DAA of Ryanair’s 1m passenger growth offer proves, yet again, that Dublin Airport has no interest in traffic growth at Shannon. If they did, Dublin would not have raised Shannon passenger charges by 33% in November 2010 (just four months ago) when inflation was 0% and Shannon traffic was collapsing. Furthermore, if the DAA was ‘committed to incentivising growth’ as Declan Collier claims, the DAA would have accepted Ryanair’s offer of 1m growth passengers at Shannon, on similar terms to those currently enjoyed by Aer Lingus at Dublin.
Instead of accepting the only traffic growth offer the DAA has received at Shannon, the DAA are holding ‘Conferences’ today in Bunratty Castle to discuss the serious issue of growing traffic at Shannon. This conference might have made some contribution if it was held in Shannon Airport where the various speakers could see how empty the terminal is but instead the DAA prefer to waste money renting Bunratty Castle, for a talking shop followed by a gourmet lunch for the exhausted speaker, instead of working with Ryanair, the world’s largest international airline, to add 1 million passengers at Shannon.”