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Aer Arann
Founded 1970 (Galway)
Focus cities Manchester
Frequent flyer program Silver Club
Fleet size 14 (+3 orders)
Destinations 24
Parent company Aer Arann
Headquarters Dublin, Ireland
Key people Pádraig Ó Céidigh (MD & Owner)
Aer Arann headquarters in Dublin
An Aer Arann ATR 72 taking off from Bristol Airport

Aer Arann is a regional airline based in Dublin, Ireland,[1] with its main hubs at Cork and Dublin. Aer Arann operates scheduled services from Ireland, the Isle of Man to the United Kingdom, Northern Ireland and France, with a fleet of 14 aircraft. Aer Arann is owned by Pádraig Ó Céidigh, and has expanded from a single aircraft to Ireland's third largest airline behind Ryanair and Aer Lingus. The airline has 6 airport bases, operating to 24 destinations.



Aer Arann was established in 1970 to provide an island-hopping air service between Galway and the Aran Islands off the west coast of Ireland. Operations, using a single Britten-Norman Islander, began in August 1970. This service has since been moved to the less distant Connemara Airport and operates as "Aer Arann Islands". As of 2010 it still uses Islander aircraft.

The turning point for the airline was in 1994 when Pádraig Ó Céidigh purchased the airline. Ó Céidigh began to expand the airline's routes and fleet, launching scheduled services in 1998. Also in 1998, the government awarded the airline the PSO route between Donegal and Dublin followed by the route between Sligo and Dublin.

In 2002, service to the United Kingdom and Jersey was introduced, followed by service to Lorient and Nantes in Brittany in 2004.

In 2007, Aer Arann had a turnover of €100 million and passenger numbers in excess of 1.15 million.

In 2008, in recognition of the company's marketing achievements, the Head of Sales and Marketing, Colin Lewis was awarded the All Ireland Marketing Leader of the Year Award by the Marketing Institute of Ireland.[2]

In 2008, Aer Arann entered into a franchise agreement with Nex Aviation and introduced service to Amsterdam, Bordeaux, Málaga and Faro, using the BAe-146 aircraft during the summer months. The Amsterdam service, which was operated by an ATR 72-500, ended on the 14th of January 2009.

In October 2008, the airline announced that they would be implementing a cost saving programme, due to the downturn in passenger traffic, which would involve some focus on charter flights and leasing of their crews and aircraft to other airlines.[3] The airline stated that up to 100 redundancies would be needed, but this was later revised to 70 which would represent a 20% reduction of staff.[4] The airline's key routes will remain unchanged.

On 1 March 2010 Aer Arann announced an expansion into City of Derry Airport by introducing new services to Edinburgh and Manchester. They also announced a return to Kerry Airport, resuming flights to Manchester.




On 24 June 2008, Aer Arann and Aer Lingus signed an interline agreement which allows for passengers in Cork to book to any of the Aer Lingus destinations in the United States. Bookings are made on Aer Lingus' website, and include ticketing on the Cork - Dublin flight on Aer Arann.[5] Abu Dhabi based Etihad Airways signed a codeshare agreement with Aer Arann on 15 January 2009, allowing passengers from Galway, Cork and the Isle of Man to fly to Abu Dhabi all under the Etihad brand, with their flight numbers being placed on Aer Arann flights to Dublin.[6] This was later extended to Aer Arann routes to Ireland West Knock and Sligo.

Aer Lingus Alliance

In January 2010 Aer Lingus announced that the carrier was in advanced talks with Irish regional airline Aer Arann about a possible commercial alliance that would see Aer Arann provide feeder services for Aer Lingus flights between Dublin/Cork and UK regional airports. Aer Lingus will not take an equity stake in Aer Arann but the deal will result in Aer Lingus bulk buying seats on Aer Arann services. The move will allow Aer Lingus to expand its operations without the need for additional aircraft plus serve airports that cannot handle their A320/321 fleet. The agreement will expand on both carriers current Interline arrangement on flights between Dublin/Cork.It is anticipated that routes from Cork to Glasgow will be added along with other routes which Aer Lingus will monitor.[7]

Aer Lingus Regional will now launch on 28 March 2010, more new routes are anticipated.


An ATR 42 on final approach at Dublin, in an older colour scheme
A plain white Aer Arann ATR 72 at Edinburgh Airport
An ATR 72 at Leeds Bradford Airport, in a new colour scheme

Aer Arann operates 14 narrow-body regional airliners as of March 2010, with a single economy class service:[8]

Aer Arann Fleet
Aircraft In
Orders Passengers
ATR 42-300 5 0 48 or 50[9]
ATR 72-201 2 0 68 or 70[10]
ATR 72-500 4 3 72[11] All to be operated for Aer Lingus from 28 March
Britten-Norman Islander[12] 3 0 9
Total 14 3

The fleet of ATR 42 and 72 aircraft are, as of March 2010, about 13.5 years old.[13]

In May 2006, Aer Arann placed an order worth €180 million for 10 ATR72-500 series aircraft.[14]

In October 2008, Aer Arann announced that as part of a cost saving plan they would lease 4 of their 13 ATRs to other airlines.[15]

All 4 ATR 72-500 aircraft are to leave the Aer Arann fleet and operate for Aer Lingus Regional from 28 March 2010. The remaining 3 ATR 72-500 aircraft on order will operate also for Aer Lingus Regional for new services this year.

Former fleet

Aer Arann operated the following aircraft types (in alphabetical order):


The current livery of Aer Arann, introduced in 2007,[20] was inspired by Celtic rings, or triskels, in the colours of Aer Arann as well as silver and gold in celebration of the airline.[21] Aer Arann's former livery was a primarily white scheme, with two blue cheatlines and the companies' logo and website on the body, and blue half circles on the tail of the aircraft.[22] The Islander aircraft originally were pained in a dark colour, with a yellow cheatline and the airline name towards the tail of the aircraft,[23] however currently the aircraft are painted in a white colour scheme, still with the name near the tail.[24]


Silver Club

Silver Club is the travel rewards program of Aer Arann. Unlike traditional frequent-flier programmes, there are no points or kilometers to earn, and is an invitation only programme. Benefits of Silver Club include airport lounge access in Dublin and Cork, no change fees, an increase in baggage allowance to 25 kilograms (55 lb), preferred seat selection and a dedicated free-phone number. [25]

In flight services

Aer Arann has a buy on board programme offering Doolittles brand sandwiches, crisps, candy bars as well as alcoholic and non alcoholic drinks for purchase.[26]

Sponsorship deals

Aer Arann are the main shirt sponsors of the Galway Gaelic Football team,[27] and have their logo on the back of the Connaught Rugby Team shirts.

See also


  1. ^ "Aer Arann Contact Information." Aer Arann. Retrieved on 12 November 2009.
  2. ^
  3. ^ Aer Arann announces cost reduction programme
  4. ^ Aer Arann completes review of operations Jobs saved - some route changes
  5. ^ "Aer Arann, Aer Lingus Cork link deal". RTÉ. 2008-06-24. Retrieved 2009-10-12. 
  6. ^ Noonan, Laura (2009-01-16). "Aer Arann teams up with Etihad". Irish Independent. Retrieved 2009-10-12. 
  7. ^
  8. ^ "Aer Arann fleet list". CH-Aviation. Retrieved 2009-10-11. 
  9. ^ "ATR42-300". European Regions Airline Association. Retrieved 2009-10-12. 
  10. ^ "ATR72-200". European Regions Airline Association. Retrieved 2009-10-12. 
  11. ^ "ATR72-500". European Regions Airline Association. Retrieved 2009-10-12. 
  12. ^ "Britten-Norman Islanders". 
  13. ^ "Airline fleet age". Retrieved 2009-10-11. 
  14. ^
  15. ^
  16. ^ "ATW Daily News". ATW Online. 2008-01-14. Retrieved 2009-10-11. 
  17. ^ "Engine problem forces Aer Arann flight to make emergency landing". The Irish Times. 2008-04-30. Retrieved 2009-10-11. 
  18. ^ Goodman, Fergal (1985-08-17). "EI-BRC". Retrieved 2009-10-12. 
  19. ^ "Plane skids off runway". BBC News. 2001-02-01. Retrieved 2009-10-11. 
  20. ^ Aer Arann (2008-01-28). "Aer Arann Announces Record Growth In 2007". Press release. Retrieved 2009-10-12. 
  21. ^ "New aircraft colour scheme". Aer Arann. Retrieved 2009-10-12. 
  22. ^ airliner photos (2009-05-24). "ATR-42-312 EI-CPT AER ARANN". Flickr. Retrieved 2009-10-12. 
  23. ^ Sheridan, Bill (1973). "EI-AWM". Retrieved 2009-10-12. 
  24. ^ peachA (2003-06-25). "EI-AYN". Retrieved 2009-10-12. 
  25. ^ "Welcome to the Aer Arann Silver Club". Aer Arann. Retrieved 2009-10-11. 
  26. ^ "Aer Arann Inflight Menu". Aer Arann. Retrieved 2009-10-11. 
  27. ^ "Kernan takes over as Galway boss". BBC Sport. 2009-09-10. Retrieved 2009-10-11. 

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