Ryanair has decided to suspend operations at four Irish airports for four weeks amid weak travel demand due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The move will involve temporarily ceasing Ryanair services at Cork, Kerry, Ireland West and Shannon airports from 14 November to 12 December this year.
However, the low-cost airline will continue to operate flights from Dublin Airport. It aims to resume services before Christmas.
According to a Reuters report, stringent Covid-19 restrictions in the country forced Ryanair to take the decision.
Under current rules, people in Ireland are advised to avoid all non-essential travel more than 5km from home.
The airline said in a statement: “As a result of continuous government mismanagement and a complete collapse in travel demand, additional cuts regrettably had to be made across our Irish airports.”
This year, Ryanair also plans to operate around 40% of the capacity it operated last year during the winter season.
Following the announcement, Cork Airport managing director Niall MacCarthy expressed his concern over the decision.
MacCarthy said: “The news that Ryanair will be cancelling all flights from Cork Airport for a four-week period from mid-November to mid-December is a further body blow to the Irish aviation industry and to Cork and the South of Ireland in particular.
“The Irish aviation ecosystem is already extremely weakened and fragile and each blow delivers further incremental damage.”
Earlier this month, it was reported that Ireland is planning to introduce airport Covid-19 testing to support the struggling aviation sector.