Ryanair first flung open its cabin doors in 1985, when it became Europe’s first budget carrier offering non-stop flights between Ireland and London’s Gatwick airport. Today, the airline operates in 34 countries, connecting more than 200 destinations.
With a jaw-dropping average ticket price in the region of €50 ($56), Ryanair has become the go-to option for budget travelers looking for a no-frills, wallet-friendly flight to their favorite European cities. Its success has been mirrored by other up-and-coming low-cost carriers here in the U.S., such as JetBlue, Southwest Airlines and Spirit Airlines. Now, the Dublin-based company will be expanding its reach by offering long-haul flights to far-flung destinations including Buenos Aires, New York and Havana.
Currently the low-cost airline offers short-haul flights to its passengers, but now travelers departing from Madrid can book long-haul trips through its partner Air Europa.
“We continue to speak to a number of other long-haul airlines about potential connecting flight partnerships and we look forward to offering our 130 million customers an even greater choice and range of long-haul services in 2018,” CEO Michael O’Leary told The Telegraph in a recent interview.
Whispers in the aviation industry point to a future potential partnership between Ryanair and Norwegian Airlines, which would help further expand both companies’ routes and allow passengers to book connecting flights without needing to reserve separate tickets.
In short, Ryanair is on course to take over the world and become the de facto budget carrier. “We continue our journey to becoming the Amazon of travel,” said O’Leary.