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Dublin Airport says busiest weekend post-pandemic has started well

Passengers queue at Dublin Airport at the start of June. Picture: Dominic McGrath/PA Wire
Aine Fox, PA

Dublin Airport’s busiest weekend since before the pandemic has started well, according to authorities who will be hoping to avoid the long queues and missed flights seen last month.

The number of passengers flying out between Friday and Monday will be around 50,000-55,000 every day, Dublin Airport Authority (DAA) said.

The capital’s airport made international headlines in May after passenger queues stretched outside the airport terminals and more than 1,000 people missed their flights.

The DAA said measures introduced in the aftermath of the “difficulties” on the last Sunday in May have worked well in recent weeks and will remain in place over the coming weeks.

Passenger levels this weekend are expected to become the norm on a daily basis over the coming weeks, the DAA said, as schools finish for the summer and thousands of families jet off on holidays abroad.

Transport minister Eamon Ryan did not rule out further measures to deal with higher passenger numbers, after Airlines for America wrote to demand improvements.

Keith Glatz, the group’s vice-president of international affairs, said: “We believe this issue will become even more urgent as passenger numbers increase during the peak summer travel season.”

Mr Ryan told RTE Radio’s News At One: “I agree we have to address this issue. We have been working directly with Dublin airport. We are looking at further, a whole range of, different solutions because no-one wants passengers not to be able to get their flights.”

He said the problem is not specific to Dublin, but is happening at airports across northern Europe.

Asked if further measures could include calling in the Army, Mr Ryan said: “We’ve always said we would look at further measures as needs be.”

People are following the advice on turning up well in advance of their flights and allowing extra time if they are checking in a bag, the DAA said.

In a statement, the DAA said: “The weekend has started well with our busy first wave on Friday morning, our busiest period of the day, seeing passengers get through security screening in both terminals in under 30 minutes.

“Passengers are heeding our advice – to be at the airport 2.5 hours before a short-haul flight or 3.5 hours prior to a long-haul departure, with an additional hour allowed if checking in a bag.

“With more than 50,000 passengers departing each day this weekend, we advise anyone flying out to continue to follow our passenger advice.”

Earlier this month the DAA’s chief executive Dalton Philips addressed the problems the airport had faced, conceding the aviation sector had recovered more quickly than anticipated, and that 248 security staff should not have been offered voluntary redundancy last year, during travel restrictions introduced amid the pandemic.

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