Port of Seattle: From the Emerald City to the Emerald Isle
Irish eyes will be smiling on the Puget Sound region in the spring of 2018, when Irish airline Aer Lingus begins nonstop service between Dublin and Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. The Port of Seattle praised today’s announcement, made in the Irish capital.
“Dublin was the largest European destination without direct service from Seattle – now our luck has changed!” said Port of Seattle Commission President Tom Albro. “Both cities are well-known for their booming tech industries with Washington State-based companies making significant investments in Dublin, while at the same time this route will provide additional choices for our region’s travelers.”
Starting May 18, 2018, Aer Lingus will fly a 265-seat Airbus 330-200 with service four times weekly: Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday. Flights are scheduled to arrive in Seattle at 5:35 p.m., and depart for Dublin at 7:20 p.m. The aircraft will feature 23 flat bed business class seats and 243 economy class seats. Aer Lingus will provide Seattle passengers connections through Dublin to 24 European cities.
This will be the first pre-cleared trans-Atlantic flight to fly into Seattle. That means passengers and their luggage will be cleared at the U.S. Customs and Border Protection facility in Ireland before departure, so when travelers arrive in Seattle they will not need to go through passport control.
Washington and Ireland share many ties. More than 800,000 Washingtonians claim “Irish” as their primary ancestry. And Seattle has maintained a Sister City relationship with the Irish city of Galway since 1986. The ties between the Emerald City and the Emerald Isle go back even farther. Thomas Burke, one of early Seattle’s civic champions and chief justice of the Supreme Court of the Washington Territory, was born in New York of Irish immigrant parents. Irish-born businessman John Collins served on the Seattle City Council from 1869 to 1883, including one year as mayor. Redmond, home of Microsoft, was founded in 1882 by Irishman Luke McRedmond. More recently, Ireland’s Taoiseach (Prime Minister) Leo Varadkar made Seattle his initial stop on his first official visit to the United States earlier this month.
Sea-Tac is one of the nation’s fastest-growing large hub airports and four new international carriers joined the airport in 2017. Aer Lingus will be the third new international carrier to begin operations at Sea-Tac in 2018.