Ryanair has said it is to suspend all operations from Irish airports with the exception of Dublin.
The suspension will start on 4th November and last for at least 4 weeks and will see flights stopped from Shannon, Cork, Knock (West Ireland).
Ryanair has taken the decision due to a drop-off in demand caused by what it calls the mismanagement of the Coronavirus pandemic by the Irish Government.
In a statement, the airline said: “As a result of continuous Government mismanagement and a complete collapse in travel demand, additional cuts regrettably had to be made across our Irish airports,”
Ryanair had already planned to close its bases at Cork and Shannon for the winter season put hundreds of jobs at risk but this latest move ramps up the pressure on the Irish government to look at air travel to and from the Island.
Irish union SIPTU called for the Irish Government to support aviation workers in light of the announcement by Ryanair.
In a statement, SIPTU Sector Organiser, Neil McGowan said “The Ryanair decision is a devastating blow to workers in the regional international airports. It will reduce the number of flights in these airports to minimal levels or bring about their temporary closure. There is also a real concern that the cancellations will continue into 2021.
“For several months, SIPTU has been calling on the Government to improve the level of payment the wage subsidy scheme provides for workers in the aviation industry. The Covid-19 pandemic and the resulting travel restrictions have had a crippling impact on the industry. There has been a lack of urgency by [Irish] government in tackling the crisis in the aviation industry and this has had a devastating impact on Cork, Shannon and Knock airports.”
The airline expects to operate just 40% of its normal capacity over the winter 2020/21 period.