Passenger charges at Dublin Airport could increase significantly from next year

PASSENGER FEES at Dublin Airport could rise from next year, which will set airlines ablaze in the midst of a post-Covid recovery as they grapple with high inflation-related costs.

Ublin Airport is the only airport in the country where passenger fees are regulated.

The Commission for Aviation Regulation (CAR) said on Friday that it had set an average base fare cap of €7.59 per passenger for the period 2023-2026 following an interim review. The fee cap will start at €7.59 next year. In 2024, 2025 and 2026 the price caps are €7.53, €7.48 and €7.77 respectively.

The current cap is €8.11.

But if inflation rises as expected and Dublin Airport can deliver its huge investment plan on time, the real fare caps just announced will be converted into nominal fare caps including inflation of €8.68 in 2023, €9.23 in 2024 and €10.30 converted in 2025 and €11.73 in 2026.

Dublin Airport’s two largest customers are Aer Lingus and Ryanair.

The Commission’s third review of pricing in 2019 was a direct response to the pandemic.

The CAR said its final determination under the current review is comparable to the average passenger fee of €8.52 it proposed in its earlier draft decision.

The final fixing is also much lower than the range of €13.04 to €14.77 sought by Dublin Airport, which is operated by the DAA, the semi-public company that also controls Cork Airport.

The CAR said the prices it set would allow Dublin Airport to generate €2.8 billion in revenue. This includes €1.4 billion from airport charges over the next four years and a further €1.4 billion from activities such as retail, parking and real estate leasing.

The CAR said its pricing differs significantly from what Dublin Airport was looking for for a number of reasons.

The commission said the airport expects passenger numbers to recover more slowly than the CAR, and also suggested a higher return for investors. Dublin Airport also forecast that operating costs would grow much faster than CAR’s own forecast.

The Commission has forecast passenger numbers at Dublin Airport to reach 31.7 million next year and in 2024 to surpass the 32.9 million who flew through its doors in 2019. The CAR projects they will reach 35.7 million in 2026. The DAA believes Dublin Airport will handle 40 million passengers by 2030.

“We note the Commission for Aviation Regulation’s final decision on Dublin Airport’s fare cap for the period 2023-2026. Aer Lingus will review the content of the finding in detail in the coming days,” said an airline spokesman.

Ryanair has criticized the final decision, claiming the new charges are “unjustified”.

“The DAA should invest less time and money in wasteful vanity projects like the proposed €200 million taxiway tunnel and instead use those resources to offer lower prices, more capacity and moreBetter facilities for passengers to get through security without long lines, sip a decent cup of coffee and relax in a comfortable seat while waiting to board their cheap Ryanair flight,” said Eddie Wilson, Chief Ryanair Executive. Passenger charges at Dublin Airport could increase significantly from next year

Fry Electronics Team

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