MORE than 40,000 passengers will pass through Cork Airport over the August bank holiday weekend, one of the busiest weekends of the year at the airport.
It comes as part of an overall increase in passenger numbers at Cork Airport, with officials confirming that traffic in July increased by 6% versus the same month last year.
The increase is being credited to the popularity of the recently launched transatlantic route to Providence, Rhode Island, the first ever direct connection from Cork to the United States.
In fact, all nine flights from Cork to Providence in the first three weeks of August are completely sold out, according to airline Norwegian.
Cork Airport's managing director Niall MacCarthy said that customers are reacting well to the new routes launching from Cork.
"Passengers have more choice than ever flying direct from Cork Airport," he said.
"In the last six months, we have launched several new routes across Europe, as well as securing multiple extra flights on the most popular destination for this summer.
"In addition, our new transatlantic route to Boston/Providence is proving exceptionally popular, with several flights already fully booked for the weeks ahead which is a strong endorsement of the demand we always believed was here for direct connectivity to the USA."
News of strong numbers will be welcomed at the airport, coming just days after the disappointing cancellation of the WOW Air flights to Reykjavik.
Mr MacCarthy added, though, that Cork is 'consistently working to expand existing routes and secure new ones' to maintain the growth.
In 2016, passenger numbers increased 8% on the previous year, with officials remaining confident that 2017 will exceed this figure once again.
Mr MacCarthy said, "This further growth in passenger numbers highlights that people want the convenience and easiness of travelling from their local international airport here in Cork. I'm delighted to see the return on our investment in terms of time, effort and marketing of our new routes yielding a dividend to our Airline Customers and a huge saving in time and cost to our Customers in terms of the convenience of flying out of Cork Airport."
Cork Airport recently completed a major overhaul of its food and beverage options, with passengers now able to take advantage of AMT Coffee, Craft Lane Bistro, Food Republic food court and Kinsale Café Bar outlets before departing.