Aer Arann flights to continue for another four months

Galway Daily news Aer Arann four month contract extension

Flights to and from the Aran Islands will continue on their regular schedule until the end of January under a four month contract extension agreed with Aer Arann.

Aer Arann has been in a long running dispute with the government over its services to the Aran Islands, saying that their contract with the government is simply not sustainable.

Last December an emergency contract extension was agreed after the airline threatened to close, which was expiring this week.

The new four month extension comes into effect from today, RTÉ reports, and will last until January 31.

Minister of State for the Islands Seán Kyne said that the maximum allowable subvention of €300,000 will be paid to Aer Arann over this four month period.

The company and government had been arguing over a subsidy of €800,000 covering the last ten months.

However while this might reassure islanders that they will not be unexpectedly caught out in the coming weeks, there is still no information about the long term future of travel to and from the islands.

The government announced previously that it intends to advertise for a Public Service Obligation contract for a new provider, but no information is available yet about when that might happen.

A separate deal was struck last year to continue using Connemara’a Na Mine airport, also owned by the airline, for any service to the islands until 2021.