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O’Leary: There’ll Be a ‘Strong Summer 2021’

O’Leary: There’ll Be a ‘Strong Summer 2021’

Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary has dismissed the ‘panic’ about when international travel may restart and bullishly predicts a ‘strong summer 2021’ for holidaymakers. Speaking at a press conference unveiling the airline’s summer schedule out of the UK, O’Leary said “We’re very confident families will be travelling from the UK to the beaches of Europe this summer.”

Although the budget airline boss was speaking mostly about the current situation in the UK, he expressed optimism about the rest of Europe: “With Europe catching up with the UK I see very little risk that there won’t be reasonable freedom of movement. Everyone is getting panicked about international travel. But it’s only March.

“People can book with confidence for the school holidays and if there is a change, people can postpone their plans.”

O’Leary acknowledged that Boris Johnson’s proposed restart date for international travel of May 17 may change, but he insisted that optimism was the order of the day because of the “remarkably successful vaccination programmes” and not the “ill-informed news stories fuelled by the 24-hour news cycle.”

“There is a kind of hysteria around at the moment. Remember there was a huge decline in Covid-19 case rates last summer even before there was a vaccine.”

O’Leary also confirmed that Ryanair passengers will have to wear masks on board until 2022.

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Fionn Davenport is the editor-in-chief of the ITTN group, including ITTN and ITTN Ireland. He's one of Ireland's best-known travel journalists and writers, with nearly 30 years' experience writing guidebooks for Lonely Planet and others.

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