Ryanair places massive order for new aircraft
THE largest airline at East Midlands Airport has placed an order worth more than £10 billion for new aircraft.
Budget carrier Ryanair has announced it is to increase its fleet by a third to 400 planes after placing an order for 175 aircraft with Boeing.
Ryanair, which flies 36 routes from East Midlands, currently has 305 planes.
Its latest order, worth £10.3 billion, will allow the airline to retire some of its older aircraft.
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The order is for Boeing 737s, which are powered by engines made by CFM International, rather than Derby-built Rolls-Royce Trent engines.
The expansion is part of a plan by the Dublin-based carrier to increase its passenger numbers to 100 million a year.
In January, Ryanair added five routes to its summer flying schedule from East Midlands Airport - a move which the airline claimed would sustain 2,300 local jobs.
The airline directly employs 350 people at the Castle Donington airport, where seven of its Boeing 737 aircraft are based.
At the time, Ryanair’s chief executive Michael O’Leary revealed to the Derby Telegraph that his airline would be ordering more planes.
He said: “We’re already talking about expanding our winter schedule for 2013-14 and further growth for the summer of 2014. But we are rapidly running out of aircraft to meet our growth plans and we will be looking at ordering some more.”