Gov. Malloy, Conn. Airport Authority & DECD Announce New Aer Lingus Service from Bradley International Airport to Dublin
(HARTFORD, CT) - Governor Dannel P. Malloy and officials from the Connecticut Airport Authority (CAA) today announced the reestablishment of transatlantic service at Bradley International Airport - a years-long effort that Governor Malloy has completed in order to support the economy, boost tourism, and improve travel for our to and from our state.
Joined at the airport this afternoon by CAA Board Chair Mary Ellen Jones, CAA Executive Director Kevin Dillon, Department of Economic and Community Development Commissioner (DECD) Catherine Smith, Aer Lingus Executive Vice President for North America Jack Foley, and members of the business community from across the state, the Governor unveiled new, nonstop Aer Lingus service between Windsor Locks, Connecticut and Dublin, Ireland.
The Aer Lingus-operated flight, using Boeing 757 aircraft, will be daily starting September 2016. It will include one evening departure from Bradley at 6:20 p.m. that arrives in Dublin at 5:20 a.m., and one afternoon departure from Dublin at 2:30 p.m. that arrives at Bradley at 4:40 p.m. Each flight will include 12 business class seats. The airline's current 757 fleet is powered by locally manufactured Pratt & Whitney PW2000 engines.
"This is about growing our economy, boosting tourism, and building a Connecticut for the future. We have been working on this for years, and with today's announcement, it will soon become a reality," Governor Malloy said. "Traveling to and from Connecticut will be easier with direct access to Europe, and the many international hubs that Aer Lingus serves throughout the world. This new flight will not just ease travel for residents, it opens the door to connecting our state to new business opportunities and new economic development initiatives. We have a significant corporate base within Connecticut and our surrounding states that have substantial regional and European connectivity needs. As a centrally located, major airport, Bradley will continue to be an important economic driver for Connecticut. We welcome Aer Lingus to Windsor Locks and we look forward to their many years of service in our state."
"Aer Lingus is pleased to mark the beginning of this new partnership with Bradley International Airport and the State of Connecticut," Aer Lingus CEO Stephen Kavanagh said. "The addition of daily two class service aboard B757 will connect Hartford directly with our Dublin gateway and provide convenient connections to a wide range of British and European cities. This opportunity to serve the business and tourism markets in Connecticut is something that Aer Lingus is uniquely positioned to deliver upon and I'd like to thank all those who have lent their support to this initiative. We look forward to welcoming our guests on-board in 2016."
The new flight comes after Governor Malloy created the Connecticut Airport Authority in 2011 with the specific aim of enhancing Bradley - as well as the state's five other general aviation airports - into vibrant economic drivers and attract flights and services like those announced today. As a result of the CAA's renewed focus on route development, passenger levels at Bradley increased 8.4% in 2014.
Under Governor Malloy's direction, there are several projects currently underway aimed at revitalizing Bradley's facilities, including the demolition of the airport's Murphy Terminal, which will be followed by a road realignment project and the construction of a consolidated rental car facility. And in the coming years, there are plans to increase public transit to the airport, including bus service to the Windsor Locks Train Station on the Hartford Line commuter rail service between New Haven and Springfield, which is currently under development.
"The reestablishment of transatlantic service at Bradley International Airport has been one of the Connecticut Airport Authority's top priorities," CAA Board Chair Mary Ellen S. Jones said. "The new Aer Lingus service will not only provide our region's business and leisure travelers with convenient access to Ireland, but it also promises connecting service through Dublin to other major hubs in Europe and beyond."
Dublin Airport boasts a number of unique advantages for travelers. As one of the few airports outside of North America that offers U.S. Customs and Border Protection preclearance, Bradley-bound passengers will be able to undergo all necessary inspections while waiting for departure from Dublin.
"We pride ourselves at Bradley on our convenience, and this development ensures that our region's passengers will not need to endure any more long drives to JFK or Logan for their international travel needs," CAA Executive Director Kevin A. Dillon, A.A.E. said. "Additionally, due to Dublin preclearance, passengers will be able to walk off their arriving flight at Bradley as if they were domestic travelers, resulting in a significant time savings."
"The reestablishment of transatlantic service at Bradley sends a clear message to the world that Connecticut is open for business," DECD Commissioner Catherine Smith said. "Bradley is already one of our state's most crucial economic drivers, and this new service will bolster connectivity for our current businesses, stimulate further regional development, and attract new companies to the state."
The international route follows recent domestic service additions at Bradley, including new United Airlines service to George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston, Texas, and JetBlue service to Reagan National Airport in Washington, DC.
Bradley most recently offered transatlantic service with a flight to Amsterdam operated by Northwest Airlines, which was discontinued in 2009 when the airline merged with Delta at the start of the Great Recession. Bradley continues to offer international flights to Canada and Mexico.
About Bradley International Airport
Bradley International Airport is the second largest airport in New England, with a customer base that covers the entire Northeast. According to the most recent economic impact analysis, Bradley International Airport contributes $4 billion in economic activity to the state of Connecticut and the surrounding region, representing $1.2 billion in wages and 18,000 full-time jobs.
About the Connecticut Airport Authority
The CAA was established in 2011 with the goal of transforming Bradley International Airport and five of the state's general aviation airports (Danielson, Groton/New London, Hartford-Brainard, Waterbury-Oxford, and Windham Airports) into vibrant economic drivers. The CAA, a quasi-public agency, has the flexibility and autonomy to streamline processes and maintain responsiveness to economic opportunities for the airports. The CAA Board of Directors consists of 11 members with a broad spectrum of experience in aviation-related and various other industries. Board members have experience and expertise in government, financial planning, budgeting and assessment, marketing, master planning, aviation, and transportation management.
About Aer Lingus
Aer Lingus is the national airline of Ireland, founded in 1936. The company operates 50 aircraft on routes to destinations in the UK, Europe and North America and carry 11 million customers per annum. The company's primary mission is 'To Connect Ireland to The World' by providing customers with convenience, choice, comfort, value and seamless transfer options - making Aer Lingus the smart choice. Aer Lingus serves central airport locations, with its home base located at Dublin Airport. The airline has seven North American destinations with more than 100 onward connections across the U.S. and Canada, available with partner airlines. Dublin Airport is the only major airport in Europe to offer U.S. preclearance, which enables passengers to save time on arrival in the U.S. by completing all the necessary immigration and customs checks prior to departure.