Delta to increase capacity by 25% to New York

Delta Airlines Boeing 767
Delta will use the larger Boeing 767 jet on it’s Shannon/JFK route next summer – Photo: © Pat Flynn 2015

Shannon Airport is set for a significant boost in capacity next summer after US airline Delta confirmed it will use a larger aircraft on it’s seasonal service to New York.

Delta, like other carriers that serve the US from Shannon, have in recent years used narrow-body Boeing 757 series jet’s capable of carrying around 170 passengers depending on the configuration.

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From next May however, the airline will use the larger wide-bodied Boeing 767-300 aircraft on it’s Shannon to New York/JFK route resulting in a 25% increase in capacity, or 17,000 additional seats. 

The move is seen as an endorsement of the growing demand for transatlantic seats into Shannon Airport and the popularity of the airport’s US pre-clearance facilities.

Shannon was the first airport in the world, outside of the Americas, to offer full US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) pre-clearance facilities to passengers travelling to the US.

When pre-cleared, travellers arrive in the states as domestic passengers without having to go through often lengthy security checks at their destination.

Delta’s senior vice president for Europe, Middle East and Africa Nat Pieper said: “U.S. visitor numbers to Ireland continue to grow year-over-year, with more than one million American tourists traveling to Ireland in 2014.

“Next summer we will be offering up to 10,700 weekly seats between Ireland and the U.S. during the peak months, responding to higher demand for travel during this time and supporting inbound tourism,” Mr Pieper added.

Photo: © Pat Flynn 2015
Delta has been using the narrow-body Boeing 757 jet on the Shannon/JFK route – Photo: © Pat Flynn 2015

Shannon Group plc CEO Neil Pakey said: “Transatlantic services at Shannon have grown year on year since the airport was made independent in 2013 and this latest boost by Delta is further evidence of the strength of that market.

As the biggest airline in the world in terms of passenger numbers, Delta’s expansion of their Shanon service to their JFK hub provides further opportunity for global connectivity,” Mr Pakey said.

“This is excellent news for passengers from this region who want to fly to JFK and beyond but is also excellent news again for the tourism industry here. There has been a considerable transatlantic market rebound generally over recent years but there is a particular demand for services directly into the west of Ireland through Shannon and we are delighted to be able to facilitate this through airline partners such as Delta,” the airport boss said.

“We have a unique tourism product here along the west and south of Ireland and its essential that we have these services to satisfy growing tourism demand. The Wild Atlantic Way has been a stroke of genius for the tourism industry in Ireland and we expect that demand will continue to rise the more people are made aware of all the Wild Atlantic Way has to offer,” Mr Pakey added.

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