Aer Lingus is accelerating its international expansion with newly announced service to Los Angeles, Newark, and Hartford in 2016.
New USA Routes Propel Aer Lingus International Expansion
Thus far, we only have details about the Los Angeles route, which will operate five days per week on an Airbus A330-200 with 23 lie-flat business class seats and 248 economy class seats on the following schedule:
- EI145 Dublin – Los Angeles dep 3:00PM arr 6:00PM
- EI144 Los Angeles – Dublin dep 7:50PM arr 2:00PM+1
I’ll leave it for Rohan to analyze the economics of the route, but I am excited because the schedule is ideal to maximize sleeping flying eastbound and to maximize a morning in Dublin and evening in Los Angeles when flying westbound.
I’ve written extensively about Aer Lingus this year and have fallen in love with the Irish flag carrier after my recent flight from Dublin to Boston in business class:
- Aer Lingus Business Class A330 Fleet Will Be Fully Lie-Flat by 01 April 2015
- Exciting New Business Class Experience Arriving on Aer Lingus
- Aer Lingus to Join oneworld: No Irish Luck for Me!
- Transit and U.S. Preclearance in Dublin Airport
- Aer Lingus Gold Circle Lounge Dublin Terminal 2
- Dublin to Boston in Aer Lingus Business Class
Friendly Competition With Ethiopian Airlines on Los Angeles – Dublin Route
Aer Lingus will not be the only carrier serving LAX – DUB non-stop, competing with Star Alliance member Ethiopian Airlines, which currently offers a three-times-weekly Fifth Freedom service between the two metropolises because of the infeasibility of non-stops between the U.S. west coast and Addis Ababa.
Flights times are dissimilar (the Ethiopian flight leaves very late from LAX and returns very early from DUB, with the Boeing 787 utilized on the route spending most of the day in LAX).
How To Book Awards Seats on Aer Lingus on New Los Angeles – Dublin Route
With Aer Lingus joining IAG and eventually oneworld, Aer Lingus flights may soon be bookable with your American Airlines miles, but currently your two best sources for booking AerLingus award space are British Airways and United Airlines (Qantas is another option, but a horrible value).
For business class on the new Los Angeles route, 75K British Airways Avios or 70K United MileagePlus miles will be necessary for a one-way journey. Economy class is 25K on BA or 30K on United.
For now, at least, fuel surcharges on Aer Lingus are very mild, meaning your out-of-pocket expenses when redeeming with BA are minimal. United does not pass on fuel surcharges for any of its airline partners. Look for higher fuel surcharges when using Avios once the IAG takeover is complete.
The new Newark route will put Aer Lingus on a route already served by partner United Airlines, but I anticipate the United partnership will dissolve as soon as Aer Lingus joins oneworld. If you are sitting on a lot of United miles and want to book Aer Lingus, better now than later…
More options to get to Europe, especially from the West Coast, are always appreciated and these three new routes offer a compelling reason to fly Aer Lingus, a solid carrier with a tremendous business class product. I look forward to trying out the new LA route.