Wednesday, 6 May 2009

Aer Lingus

Aer Lingus is the flag carrier of Ireland. It operates a fleet of Airbus aircraft serving Europe, North America and northern Africa. It is Ireland's oldest extant airline, and its second largest after low-cost rival Ryanair. The airline's head office is located on the grounds of Dublin Airport.


Once a great airline, it’s now a secondary carrier, it’s on-board service for European and short haul flights is basic, snacks and drinks available for purchase, costs are pretty average. Long Haul flights offer a nice meal service and complimentary drinks .


Telephone reservations are to be avoided, the fares offered are on average 25% more than those available online, remember also that the first fare you see is not including tax, therefore add another 20 to 40 per cent. 78 per cent of flights departed on time and the airline has a reasonably good safety record.
Our Rating 3 stars.
  • Reservations
  • UK 0871 718 5000
  • Ireland 0818 365000
  • USA 1-516 622 4222
Best deals online



Formed in 1936, Aer Lingus is a former member of the Oneworld airline alliance, which it left on 31 March 2007. While it is not part of alliance, the airline has codeshares with Oneworld, Star Alliance and SkyTeam members, as well as interline agreements with Aer Arann and JetBlue Airways. The company employs 4,000 people and in 2010 had revenues of €1.2 billion. Aer Lingus flew 9.3 million passengers in 2010. It has a mixed business model, operating a low fare service on its European and North African routes and full service, two-class flights on transatlantic routes.
Aer Lingus is 29.4% owned by its rival, Ryanair, and 25.4% owned by the Government of Ireland. The airline was floated on the Dublin and London Stock Exchanges on 2 October 2006, following prior government approval (the government previously owned 85% of the airline). The principal group companies include Aer Lingus Limited, Aer Lingus Beachey Limited, Aer Lingus (Ireland) Limited and Dirnan Insurance Company Limited, all of which are wholly owned.
Aer Lingus is celebrating it's 75th anniversary in 2011. On 26 March, the company presented her latest aircraft which has been painted in the 1960s livery and the crew was wearing a selection of the historical uniforms.
History
Early years
A DH.84 Dragon, repainted in the livery of Aer Lingus' original aircraft "Iolar" at Manchester Airport, England (1988)Aer Lingus was founded on 15 April 1936, with a capital of £100,000. Its first chairman was Seán Ó hUadhaigh. Pending legislation for Government investment through a parent company, Aer Lingus was associated with Blackpool and West Coast Air Services which advanced the money for the first aircraft, and operated with Aer Lingus under the common title "Irish Sea Airways". Aer Lingus Teoranta was registered as an airline on 22 May 1936. The name Aer Lingus is an anglicisation of the Irish form Aer Loingeas, which means Air Fleet. The name was proposed by Richard F O'Connor, who was County Cork Surveyor, as well as an aviation enthusiast. Aer Lingus was originally pronounced 'air ling-us' (as the Irish Aer Loingeas is pronounced) and only later did the pronunciation change to the 'air ling-gus' used now.
On 27 May 1936, five days after being registered as an airline, its first service began between Baldonnel Airfield in Dublin and Whitchurch in Bristol, England, using a six-seater De Havilland 84 Dragon (registration EI-ABI) biplane, named Iolar (Eagle).
The original aircraft acquired by Aer Lingus (DH.84 Dragon MK2) was later sold to an English company in 1938 as the airline expanded. The original aircraft is believed to have been shot down and lost in 1941 near the scilly isles during WW2.
Later that year, the airline acquired its second aircraft, a four-engined biplane De Havilland 86 Express named "Éire", with a capacity of 14 passengers.[7] This aircraft provided the first air link between Dublin and London by extending the Bristol service to Croydon. At the same time, the DH84 Dragon was used to inaugurate an Aer Lingus service on the Dublin-Liverpool route.
The airline was established as the national carrier under the Air Navigation and Transport Act (1936). In 1937, the Irish government created Aer Rianta (now called Dublin Airport Authority), a company to assume financial responsibility for the new airline and the entire country's civil aviation infrastructure. In April 1937, Aer Lingus became wholly owned by the Irish government via Aer Rianta.
The airline's first General Manager was Dr JF (Jeremiah known as 'Jerry') Dempsey, a chartered accountant, who joined the company on secondment from Kennedy Crowley & Co (predecessor to KPMG) as Company Secretary in 1936 (aged 30) and was appointed to the role of General Manager in 1937. He retired 30 years later in 1967 at the age of 60.
In 1938, Iolar was replaced by a de Havilland DH.89 Dragon Rapide, and a second DH86B was also purchased. Two Lockheed 14s arrived in 1939, Aer Lingus' first all-metal aircraft.
Douglas DC-3 at Manchester Airport, England (1948) wearing the first postwar liveryIn January 1940, a new airport was completed in the Dublin suburb of Collinstown and Aer Lingus moved their operations there. A new DC-3 was bought and new services to Liverpool and an internal service to Shannon were inaugurated. The airline's services were curtailed during World War II with the sole route being to Liverpool or Barton Aerodrome Manchester depending on the fluctuating security situation.
Post-war expansion on 9 November 1945, regular services were resumed with an inaugural flight to London. From this point Aer Lingus planes, initially mostly Douglas DC-3s, were painted in a silver and green livery. The airline's first flight attendants were introduced.



In 1946, a new Anglo-Irish agreement gave Aer Lingus exclusive UK traffic rights from Ireland in exchange for a 40% holding by BOAC and British European Airways (BEA). Because of Aer Lingus' growth the airline bought seven new Vickers Viking planes in 1947, however, these proved to be uneconomical and were soon sold.
Aer Lingus Bristol 170 Freighter at Manchester Airport (1953) In 1947, Aerlínte Éireann came into existence with the purpose of operating transatlantic flights to New York from Ireland. Five new Lockheed Constellations were ordered but a change of government and a financial crisis prevented the service from starting. John A Costello, the incoming Fine Gael Taoiseach (Prime Minister), was not a keen supporter of air travel and thought that flying the Atlantic was too grandiose a scheme for a small airline from a small country like Ireland.[citation needed] The Constellations were then sold to BOAC.
Vickers Viscount 808 in "green top" livery at Manchester Airport, England (1963)During the late 1940s and early 1950s, Aer Lingus introduced routes to Brussels, Amsterdam and Rome. Because of the expanding route structure the airline became one of the first to order Vickers Viscount 700s in 1951, which were placed in service in April 1954. In 1952 the airline expanded its all-freight services and acquired a small fleet of Bristol 170 Freighters, which remained in service until 1957.
In 1954, Prof. Patrick Lynch was appointed chairman of Aer Lingus and Aer Rianta at the young age of 38, taking on the task of turning the £60,000 deficit of the companies into a profit. He was Chairman for 21 years to 1975, and retired from that position at his own request to the government of the day. Even with changes of government, they retained him in this position.[citation needed] In 1956, Aer Lingus introduced a new, green-top livery with a white lighting flash down the windows and the Irish flag displayed on the fin.
First transatlantic service
Boeing 720 in Aer Lingus-Irish International livery. (1965)On 28 April 1958, Aerlínte Éireann operated their first transatlantic service from Shannon to New York. Three Lockheed Super Constellations were used for the twice-weekly service. The aircraft were leased from the American airline Seaboard and Western while Irish cabin crews were used. This arrangement continued until 1 January 1960 when Aerlínte Éireann was renamed Aer Lingus – Irish International Airlines.
Aer Lingus bought seven Fokker F27 Friendships, which were delivered between November 1958 and May 1959. These were used in short-haul services to the UK, gradually replacing the Dakotas, until Aer Lingus disposed of them during 1966 in favour of second-hand Viscount 800s.
The airline entered the jet age on 14 December 1960 when three Boeing 720s were delivered for use on the New York route and the newest Aer Lingus destination Boston.
In 1963, Aer Lingus added Carvairs to the fleet. With this aircraft, five cars could be transported by loading them into the fuselage through the nose of the aircraft. The Carvair proved to be uneconomic for the airline partly due to the rise of car ferry services by sea, and the aircraft were then used for freight services until disposed of.
The Boeing 720s proved to be a success for the airline on the transatlantic routes. To supplement these, Aer Lingus took delivery of their first larger Boeing 707 in 1964, and the type continued to serve the airline until 1986.
Jet aircraft
Fokker F27 Friendship at Manchester Airport, England, the F27 was used on short-haul services between 1958 and 1966. (1965)Conversion of the European fleet to jet equipment began in 1965 when the BAC One-Eleven started services from Dublin and Cork to Paris and via Manchester to Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Düsseldorf and Frankfurt. A new livery was adopted in the same year, with a large green shamrock on the fin and titles of Aer Lingus-Irish International just above the plane's windows. In 1966, the remainder of the company's shares held by Aer Rianta were transferred to the Minister for Finance.
Aviation Traders Carvair that was used as a vehicle freighter is seen loading a car at Bristol Airport, England. (1964)In 1966, the route from Shannon to Montreal and onward to Chicago was inaugurated. Also, in 1968, flights from Belfast, in Northern Ireland, to New York were started. The service was soon suspended, due to the beginning of the Troubles in the area. 1969 saw the introduction of Boeing 737s to the Aer Lingus fleet, to cope with the high demand for flights between the cities of Dublin and London. Later, Aer Lingus extended the 737 flights to all of their European network.
In 1967, after 30 years of service, General Manager Dr J F Dempsey signed the contract for the airline's first two Boeing 747 aircraft (Jumbo Jets) before he retired that year.
1970s to present
BAC One-Eleven in the old livery at Zürich Airport, Switzerland. (1975)In 1970, Aer Lingus took delivery of two Boeing 747s for use on the transatlantic routes. A third was later added to the fleet but one was leased out because it was not profitable at first for the company to fly 747s across the Atlantic Ocean. In 1974, a new livery was unveiled and the word International disappeared from the fuselage titles. The livery included two colours of blue and one green, plus the white shamrock on the fin.
In 1977, Aer Lingus recruited its first female pilot, Gráinne Cronin – the airline was the second in Europe (after SAS) to introduce female pilots.[9]
In September 1979, Aer Lingus became the first airline other than Alitalia to be used by Pope John Paul II, when he flew aboard a specially modified Boeing 747 (EI-ASI or St. Patrick) from Rome to Dublin and later from Shannon to Boston. In the early 1980s the 707s were phased out.
Aer Lingus Commuter Saab 340 at Dublin Airport in 1993.In 1984, a fully-owned subsidiary, Aer Lingus Commuter, was formed so that Aer Lingus could fly to larger cities in Ireland and Britain whose flying time from Dublin did not require jet planes. These services were operated primarily by five of the Belfast-built Short 360 after conducting a trial with the Short 330. Around this time Aer Lingus purchased a majority share hold in the cargo airline Aer Turas, owner of some DC-8 freighter jets.
Between 1987 and 1989, new Boeing 737s arrived to replace the older ones, and six Fokker 50s were added to the Commuter fleet. During 1990, after the passage of the deregulation act for the airline industry in Ireland, Aer Lingus had to reconsider its operational policies. The BAC One-Elevens were retired and five new 737s arrived. In 1991, four Saab 340Bs arrived at the commuter division to replace the Short 360 planes. By 1992 Aer Lingus's entire original 737-200 fleet had been replaced and was now the first operator in the world of all three versions of the second generation 737. These were the −300, −400 and −500 series, although the −300 did not stay long in Aer Lingus service.
Airbus operations
Airbus A321 landing at London Heathrow Airport (2007)In 1994, Aer Lingus started direct services between Dublin and the United States using the Airbus A330 and in May of that year Aer Lingus operated the first A330-300 ETOPS service over the North Atlantic. This led to the phasing out of the Boeing 747 and the briefly operated Boeing 767-300ER. On 2 October 1995, the Boeing 747 service ceased operations after twenty-five years of service. By that time, over eight million people had travelled across the Atlantic in Aer Lingus Boeing 747s. The late 1990s saw Aer Lingus return to Belfast with a service to New York via Shannon. Newark Liberty International Airport was also added as a destination, but these flights stopped in 2001.
The first Airbus short-haul aircraft arrived in 1998 in the form of the A321, initially to mainly operate the Dublin-Heathrow route. Six were delivered in 1998 and 1999 and continue in service today. The first A320 was delivered in 2000, with three more added to the fleet by 2001.
On 1 February 2001, Aer Lingus Commuter was merged back into the mainline operation. Business was severely affected by the 11 September attacks. Staff numbers were cut, destinations were dropped and the fleet was reduced. The airline has since weathered the storm and is back in profit. This has largely been achieved through a strategy of lowering the airline's cost base, updating the fleet with modern Airbus equipment and developing new routes to mainland European destinations. Aer Lingus had previously largely neglected mainland Europe in favour of US and British destinations. They are positioning themselves as competition to the European no-frills airlines while offering intercontinental flights as well. Business class travel for short haul flights has been phased out. Cargo services remain on a small number of routes.
A large order for A320 aircraft saw deliveries commencing in 2004 and continuing to the present. The delivery of these aircraft allowed the withdrawal of the Boeing 737 to begin and on 29 October 2005, Aer Lingus withdrew its last two 737 aircraft from service, one of which was used on the Dublin to Nice route. This marked the end of the use of Boeing aircraft at Aer Lingus and made the fleet all Airbus.
On 27 October 2005, Aer Lingus announced their first scheduled service to Asia from March 2006 as Dubai International Airport in the United Arab Emirates, where Chief Executive Dermot Mannion was based when at Emirates Airline. Despite the Aer Lingus press release describing it as the first long haul service outside the United States, there had in fact been a previous service to Montreal from 1966–1979. The great circle distance of 5,926 kilometres (3,682 mi) is comparable to the service to Chicago. At the same time Mr. Mannion linked the funding of new long haul aircraft to replace the A330 fleet with the privatisation of the airline. The Dubai service ceased in March 2008 as the airline sought to increase its market share in the newly liberalised transatlantic market.
On 6 June 2007, Aer Lingus strengthened its relationship with the European manufacturer by ordering six of the new A350 XWB as well as six A330-300E aircraft. These will be used to expand long haul operations as well as replacement aircraft for three older models. Deliveries of the A330E began in February 2009 and the A350 XWB is expected to begin in 2014.
Fleet.
As of March 2011, the Aer Lingus fleet consists of the following aircraft with an average age of 5.9 years:
clip_image001
clip_image002
Aer Lingus fleet
Aircraft Total Orders Passengers Notes
C Y Total
Airbus A320-200 33 1 174
150
174
150
Airbus A321-200 3 212 212
Airbus A330-200 3 24 248
255
272
279
One to be sold in 2011
Airbus A330-300 4 20 298 318
Airbus A350-900 9 TBA Deliveries: Four in 2015, two in 2016, three in 2018
Total 43 10
Memorial at the site of the January 1952 crash. Aer Lingus has suffered ten incidents, including seven accidents which left aircraft written-off (of which three were fatal) and one hijacking. The last incident was a non-fatal crash in 1986, when a Short 360 hit high-tension power lines after the pilots lost control of the aircraft due to airframe icing.
On 10 January 1952, a Douglas DC-3 (actually a civilianised ex-military Dakota) registered EI-AFL and named "St. Kevin" was en route from Northolt to Dublin. It flew into a mountain wave triggered by Snowdon and an area of extreme turbulence, then crashed in a peat bog near Llyn Gwynant in Snowdonia, killing all 20 passengers and 3 crew. It was the company's first fatal accident.
On 22 June 1967, a Vickers Viscount registered EI-AOF on a pilot-training flight stalled and spun into the ground near Ashbourne, killing all three crew.
On 21 September 1967, Vickers Viscount EI-AKK flying from Dublin to Bristol scraped its wing on the runway and crashed on landing at the destination airport. All of the passengers and crew survived. The aircraft was later written off.
In 1968, a Viscount EI-AOM "St. Phelim" en route from Cork to London crashed near Tuskar Rock in the waters off the southeast coast of Ireland. All 57 passengers and four crew perished. The crash is generally known as the Tuskar Rock Air Disaster in Ireland. The aircraft's elevator trim tab was found some distance from the rest of the wreckage, suggesting that it had become detached at an earlier stage. However, the accident report reached no definitive conclusion about the cause of the crash, but did not exclude the possibility that another aircraft or airborne object was involved. Following persistent rumours that the aircraft's demise was linked with nearby British military exercises, a review of the case files by the Air Accident Investigation Unit took place in 1998. This review identified a number of maintenance and record-keeping failures and concluded that the original report failed to adequately examine alternative hypotheses not involving other aircraft. A subsequent investigation concluded that the accident happened following a structural failure of the port tailplane, and ruled out the possibility that another aircraft was involved.
In 1981, an Aer Lingus flight from Dublin to London was hijacked and diverted to Le Touquet - Côte d'Opale Airport in France. While authorities negotiated with the hijacker by radio in the cockpit, French special forces entered the rear of the aircraft and overpowered him. None of the passengers or crew were injured during the hijacking. The official record shows the reason as One hijacker demanded to be taken to Iran. Plane stormed/hijacker arrested. Duration of the hijacking: less than 1 day. while various media reports indicated that the man, Laurence Downey (a former Trappist monk), demanded that the Pope release the third secret of Fátima.
On 31 January 1986, Aer Lingus Flight 328 a Short 360 registration EI-BEM on a flight from Dublin to East Midlands Airport struck power lines and crashed short of the runway. None of the 36 passengers and crew died but two passengers were injured in the accident.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...