RYANAIR has launched four new routes for the winter season out of Alicante-Elche airport as it celebrated 15 years of having a base at the busy facility.
The new low season routes will fly to Fez, Frankfurt, Helsinki, and Lodz.
The airline says it is a record winter schedule out of Alicante with 64 routes featuring over 460 flights per week.
Ryanair has carried 45 million passengers since opening its Alicante-Elche base in 2007 with the first service going to London Stansted.
The company’s Spain and Portugal chief, Elena Cabrera, said: “We continue to deliver more flights, more growth and lower fares than any other airline in Alicante.”
Airport head, Laura Navarro, commented: “Ryanair’s decision to have an Alicante base was a wise one and joint work between us has helped to bring us to where we are.”
Ryanair’s 15-year relationship with the airport has not always been so cordial.
In 2011, the Irish carrier threatened to shut down its new base because the airport instructed it(and other operators) to use air bridges to board and leave planes.
Ryanair said that would reduce turnround times but it lost a High Court challenge in 2012 over the decision imposed by airport operator Aena.
It also cut back services for a time in protest at the Alicante decision.
That ugly spat seemed long in the past as the smiling faces of Cabrera and Navarro appeared in a photo on Thursday, sandwiched between Costa Blanca Tourist Board director, Jose Mancebo, and flight attendants on either end of the trio.
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