Aer Lingus was founded by the Irish Government in 1936 to provide air services between Ireland and the UK. Its name is derived from the Irish ‘long’ meaning ‘ship’ and is therefore translated as ‘Air Fleet.’ On 27 May 1936, Aer Lingus made its maiden voyage from Baldonnel Aerodrome in Dublin to Bristol (Whitchurch airfield) in the UK. A six-seater De Havilland Dragon named ‘Iolar’ (Eagle) carried just five passengers across the Irish Sea. The airline today carries over 11 million passengers each year to over 70 destinations across Ireland, the UK, Continental Europe and the USA.
Aer Lingus has made a huge contribution to Irish life, connecting Ireland to the world and providing opportunities for Irish people to access new horizons both commercially and recreationally.
During tough economic times, the airline maintained international connectivity and gave the Irish people an outlet to experience the rest of the world and it also gave the Irish abroad a much-needed connection with home.
Aer Lingus is a company steeped in history. The now world-famous shamrock which adorns the tailfins of the Aer Lingus fleet is one of the most iconic symbols of Ireland around the globe. The airline has a worldwide reputation for caring, friendly staff, a superior quality of service and value for money. It is this ‘great care’ that sets Aer Lingus apart from its competitors and resonates with customers around the world.
The airline’s success is due to many people; our loyal guests who have travelled with us through eight decades and also our current and past employees who have worked together to keep Aer Lingus flying high. Today, 79 years on, Aer Lingus continues on its mission to connect Ireland with the world by offering award winning customer service at great value fares.