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Ryanair has hit back at claims made by Air France that it leaked information to the press regarding a complaint that it made about its rival to the European Commission.

Air France has suggested that Ryanair unfairly gave the media details about the claim, in which the low-cost airline accused the national flag carrier of increasing fares to compensate for fuel surcharges.

However, Ryanair the budget airline has staunchly denied this and said that it was fully within its rights to issue a press release regarding the matter on October 11 and is now looking forward to debating the matter in court.


Peter Sherrard, the airline's head of communications, said: "Ryanair looks forward to seeing Air France in yet another French court, on yet another silly claim by Air France.

"Air France has repeatedly raised its unjustified fuel surcharges within hours of many other high fares airlines and no amount of court cases can hide the fact that Air France is using unjustified fuel surcharges to increase fares for consumers.

"Ryanair didn't 'leak' this EU complaint to the press as Air France falsely claims.

"Ryanair issued a press release on Thursday, October 11 in order to provide the press with the full details of its EU price fixing complaint. It appears that Air France are not content with trying to limit competition and choice for air travel in France, now it seems they want to limit free speech as well."

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Virgin Atlantic, British Airways and Monarch were among the winners at the British Travel Awards, which took place last week at Battersea Evolution in London.

The "Airline of the Year" prize went to Sir Richard Branson's Virgin Atlantic, which also took home the "Best Customer Service" prize, the "Best Airline - Economy Class" award, and the "Best Airline - Business Class" prize.

Rival carrier BA scooped the "Favourite Economy Airline" and "Favourite Business Airline" awards. The "Best" prizes were voted for by travel industry experts, while the "Favourites" were voted for by the travelling public.

BA also picked up the "Favourite Scheduled Airline - Europe", and Virgin Atlantic managed to bag the "Best Scheduled Airline - Long-Haul" and "Favourite Scheduled Airline - Long-Haul" awards, confirming that the two major carriers are firm favourites with industry professionals and consumers alike.

First Choice Airways was voted "Best Leisure Airline", while "Favourite Leisure Airline" went to Thomsonfly.

EasyJet was named "Favourite Low-Cost Airline", and the "Best Scheduled Airline - Europe" was deemed to be Monarch.

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Aer Lingus announced 2 new routes to begin next summer Dublin (DUB) > Ibiza (IBZ) and Cork (ORK) > Jersey (JER).

This expansion brings to 25 the number of new routes introduced already in 2007 from Dublin (DUB), Cork (ORK) and Bristol (BRS) and represents a 10% increase in short haul capacity supporting the airline's growing European operation both to and from Ireland.

Announcing the expansion, Chief Executive, Dermot Mannion said, "Today's announcement marks the continued development of Aer Lingus with a focus on growing both our long haul and short haul network. Moreover, it reaffirms Aer Lingus' commitment to providing direct, low fares access for Irish customers to new destinations as well as providing real growth opportunities in inbound tourism from emerging markets. This development is testament to the fact that Aer Lingus' service is second to none both at home and abroad and we will continue to deliver on our proposition of low fares and greater choice of new destinations to convenient city airports for our customers."

Special introductory one - way fares excluding taxes and charges are as follows:

  • Dublin to Ibiza EUR 45
  • Cork to Jersey EUR 19
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easyJet will today welcome passengers on its inaugural flight on route Liverpool (LPL) > Lisbon (LIS), giving the region’s travellers an even greater choice of destinations from their local airport.

The four times weekly (Mon, Wed, Fri, Sat) service to Lisbon (LIS) will offer affordable fares from GBP 38.98 return (including taxes) and the airline expects to carry 43,000 passengers during the first 12 months of operation, all contributing towards the 41 million passengers that the airline expects to carry in 2008.

Lisbon, situated on the north banks of the River Tagus, is a striking city of rich cultural heritage, renovated palaces, magnificent churches and an impressive castle. Its eclectic blend of culture and architecture, with cobble stoned narrow streets full of Art Nouveau cafés, tempting restaurants, museums of ancient and modern art and the energetic nightlife in the Bairro Alto, makes it a truly fascinating city.

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Air Berlin will open a new route London Stansted (STN) > Munich (MUC) on 5 November 2007. The airline will fly twice daily from Monday to Friday and once on Saturday and Sunday.

Titus Johnson, Air Berlin Country Manager for United Kingdom and Ireland, said: "Munich is the ninth Air Berlin direct German destination from the United Kingdom and reinforces our position as the number 1 'value added' choice for travel to Germany. This is an important new route which many of our customers have been waiting for."

Flights depart from London Stansted (STN) at 08:20 in the morning and 19:15 in the evening from Monday to Friday. On Saturday flights for Munich (MUC) depart at 08:20 in the morning and on Sunday at 19:15 in the evening.

Fares to Munich start from as little as GBP 24 one-way, including all taxes, allocated seats, complimentary inflight sandwiches, soft drinks, newspapers and top bonus frequent flyer awards.

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