HomeTravel NewsRyanair Eyeing Significant Expansion of Operations in Spain and Italy

Ryanair Eyeing Significant Expansion of Operations in Spain and Italy

Ryanair is looking to significantly increase its operations in both Spain and Italy, with its two main bosses – Michael O’Leary and Eddie Wilson – separately on the ground in both countries this week laying the groundwork for expansion drives.

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Speaking in Madrid, on Monday, Ryanair DAC chief executive Eddie Wilson – who heads up the day-to-day running of the Ryanair airline, as opposed to the group – said Ryanair is looking to grow its operations by 40% in Spain and open 5 new bases there by 2030. The airline has promised to invest €5bn in Spain over the next 7 years based on no increases in airport charges.

Following that, Ryanair group chief executive Michael O’Leary was in Rome calling for a freeing up of slots in Rome (Fiumicino Airport) and Milan (Malpensa and Linate Airports) in light of Italian carrier ITA Airways joining the Lufthansa group.

Lufthansa is trying to buy a 41% stake in ITA, although the €325m investment is awaiting approval by EU regulators.

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Mr O’Leary said Ryanair would be interested in acquiring such slots and growing its operations in both Rome and Milan. Ryanair is already the single largest airline operating in the Italian market.


The Ryanair boss said the airline would be “very interested” in extra slots at Fiumicino in Rome and is also looking to grow in Bergamo and Malpensa.

He said rival low fares carriers EasyJet and Wizz could move planes from Malpensa to Linate and take up new slots there, which could free up Ryanair to grow further in Malpensa.

Geoff Percival
Geoff Percival
Geoff has worked in business, news, consumer and travel journalism for more than 25 years; having worked for and contributed to the likes of The Irish Examiner, Business & Finance, Business Plus, The Sunday Times, The Irish News, Senior Times, and The Sunday Tribune.

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