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Families reunited as airports set for busy Christmas

Dublin Airport’s operator daa has said it expects today will be the busiest day for travel in the run-up to Christmas.

Around 102,000 passengers are due to depart and arrive at the airport.

In total, around 1.5 million people are expected to travel through the airport during the Christmas period from 18 December to 6 January.

Flight operations will cease on Christmas Eve after the last flight at 11pm to ensure that air traffic control space is fully clear for the arrival of any visitors from the North Pole.

Ronan Hannon is greeted by family members at Dublin Airport after flying home from New York today (Pic:

Flights will resume on St Stephen’s Day at 5.55am.

Meanwhile, Cork Airport said it expects 195,000 arriving and departing passengers between 12 December and 10 January.

This represents a 22% increase in passenger traffic on the same period last year.

Busiest Christmas period since 2009 for Shannon Airport

Shannon Airport said it is in the middle of its busiest Christmas period since 2009.

Shannon Airport will be ‘fully operational’ during the period including Christmas Day

It said over 121,000 passengers will pass through the airport during the Christmas period, which is up 18% on last year’s figures.

Shannon Airport Group CEO Mary Considine said: “The increase in passengers choosing Shannon Airport is testament to our exceptional staff, whose dedication and hard work continues to ensure a warm and welcoming environment for everyone travelling through the airport.”

The airport will also be “fully operational” during the period including Christmas Day.

Meanwhile, Ireland West Airport in Knock, Co Mayo is expecting over 40,000 passengers to pass through the airport over the Christmas period making it the busiest in the airport’s history.

It is up almost 15% compared with the same time last year.

Today sees some 3,500 passengers coming through, most on flights from around the UK.

Catherine and Billy Reid welcome their son Jason home

Catherine and Billy Reid from the village of Kilmovee in Mayo, were reunited with their son Jason who arrived from London after flying from Adelaide in Australia.

Family members accompanied their parents to see Jason, who has not been home for four years. His Dad was emotional and wiped away tears.

“I’m the one who gets emotional. The tears flow but it’s all good. Jason has been in Australia for 17 years so anytime he comes home is a bonus. We’ll have a great Christmas with all the family together”.

Sinead Golden arrived home with a sparkler on her left hand. She and her fiancé Rob Stokes from Wolverhampton got engaged ahead of Christmas, and celebrated with her parents Gerry and Patricia.

Sinead Golden (R) alongside fiancé Rob (L) and her parents are celebrating their engagement

“I’ve been living in the UK for over a decade, and I’m thrilled to be coming home with my husband to be. He’s becoming more Irish than me! Rob says he loves the hospitality and the big Irish welcome that always awaits him in the west of Ireland.

Ailish O’Malley had an emotional reunion with her sister Edel who is home from Kent. She had her baby son, Tom Óg dressed in a Santa costume to meet his auntie.

Ailish O’Malley had an emotional reunion with her sister Edel, who came home from Britain
Ailish’s son Tom Óg dressed in a Santa costume to meet his auntie

“This will be the best Christmas getting to know baby Tom and being back with my family in our hometown of Ballinrobe,” said Edel.

“There’s nothing like spending quality time with the family”

Additional reporting: Teresa Mannion

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