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Ryanair chief executive Michael O'Leary in the company's Christmas video YouTube/Ryanair
cheer up mick

Ryanair has gone to the US for Christmas - but we're not sure why the boss looks so sad

The budget airline wants US customers to ‘trade Route 66 for the Wild Atlantic Way’.

RYANAIR WANTS US customers to swap Route 66 for the Wild Atlantic Way – and it has set up a new website to tell them so.

The Irish airline, Europe’s busiest low-cost carrier, has launched the play for American customers well ahead of its planned move into the long-haul transatlantic game.

It showcases Ryanair’s cheap flights – in US dollars – between various European cities and Irish destinations, including Shannon, Cork and Knock airports.

One banner slogan reads: “Uncle Sam says fly Ryanair”, while another says: “Trade Route 66 for the Wild Atlantic Way”.

Ryanair chief executive Michael O’Leary previously said the budget airline wants to run its own flights from the US to Europe – but it’s at least 4 years away from being able to get the planes it needs for the route.

‘An historic shortage’

He told the Deloitte Enterprise Ireland CeoForum about a month ago that the airline was “very keen” to do low-cost, transatlantic flights between about 15 European cities and 12 US destinations.

“The difficulty is we would need a fleet of 30 or 40 long-haul aircraft to start, we can’t do it in 1s and 2s,”he said.

“And there is a historic shortage of long-haul aircraft, partially because the growth carriers have put in such enormous orders for the next 4 or 5 years.

The good news is we think we can do it, we think we can make a lot of money, but the bad news is we can’t source the aircraft … for probably 3 or 4 years unless there is some significant change in the ordering profiles for long-haul aircraft.”

Ryanair Press Conferences Ryanair CEO Michael O'Leary Laura Hutton / Photocall Ireland Laura Hutton / Photocall Ireland / Photocall Ireland

It comes as Ryanair continues to kick big financial goals – announcing a series of upgrades to its profit forecasts this year as passenger numbers continue to beat expectations.

The company’s latest prediction was for a profit of up to €830 million and over 90 million customers for the 2014-15 financial year.

Meanwhile, O’Leary was making a cameo appearance in Ryanair’s Christmas video that was shot in Dublin.

Ryanair / YouTube

The airline has been featuring a new, “festive” version of its jingle for flight arrivals.

Originally published at 10.27am

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