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The flight operator Ryanair was founded in 1985 as a regional airline by Tony Ryan and started operating from Waterford to London-Gatwick at the end of the year. Since the group initially did not have much success in the following years, they remained heavily in deficit. After consulting Michael O’Leary in 1993, he decided to restructure into a low-cost flight concept. In 2007, the group wanted to take over the Irish Aer Lingus, but this was prohibited by the EU Commission because otherwise the airline would control 80% of intra-European flights from Dublin. The company continued to grow rapidly through advertising slogans such as “Goodbye Späthansa”. In 2009 the company carried 65.3 million passengers, which was the largest number of passengers in the year of any airline in the world.


Data & facts

IATA prefix code224
Corporate formAG
Number of employees10.926
sales€ 6.53 billion (2016)
Fleet strength392 (orders: 72x Boeing 737-800, 110x 737 MAX 200, as of May 2017)
Types of aircraftBoeing 737-700, 737-800, 737 MAX 200
Home airportDublin Airport
Turnstile44 bases across Europe
DestinationsNational and international

Experience reports on the airline Ryanair