The Gods must be shining down on Greece today. Or perhaps a Leprechaun decided he needed a tan.
Just as the European Commission has called off the big fat Greeek airline wedding between Aegean and Olympic airlines, Ryanair today announced that, from April, it will start flying to the Greek holiday destinations of Kos, Rhodes and Thessaloniki. The new routes take the no-frills airline’s Greek offering to a total of 30 destinations.
Andreas Vgenopoulos, chairman of Olympic’s owner Marfin Investment Group, said last week that the EC’s decision to block the Aegean/Olympic merger “will have negative consequences for consumers, as well as our country’s economy while it will benefit foreign competitors.”
Worry not, people of Greece, straight from another bankrupt European country comes help: Michael O’Leary is saving the day, and Greece’s economy. Ryanair says it will sustain 700 jobs and deliver over 350 million euro in tourism revenue.
Among the reasons to block the merger of the two Greek airlines, the European Commission cited concerns of a “service of lower quality”. It’s a good thing Ryanair, whose Greek traffic will grow to over 700,000 passengers in 2011, doesn’t have that problem.