Ryanair announces new long-haul partnership with one of Spain's largest airlines Air Europa

Rebecca Smith
All on board to Brazil?
All on board to Brazil? (Source: Getty)

Ryanair has announced a new flight partnership with one of Spain's biggest airlines, Air Europa.

The agreement will allow its customers to book Air Europa long-haul flights on the Ryanair website, spanning 20 routes from Madrid to 16 countries in North, Central and South America. Destinations include Argentina, Brazil, Cuba, Mexico and the US.

Read more: Ryanair may halt flights between UK and Europe due to Brexit uncertainty

The Irish carrier said the second phase of its Air Europa partnership will be launched later this year, allowing its customers to connect onto Air Europa flights through Madrid.

The alliance could be a headache for IAG's low-cost carrier Vueling, along with Spanish flag carrier Iberia.

Ryanair is also continuing discussions with a number of other long-haul airlines on prospective feed and connecting flight partnerships. It has already announced plans to team up with Norwegian.

The airline's boss Michael O'Leary, said: "Ryanair operates over 50 short haul routes to/from Madrid and now our customers can book flights on Air Europa long haul routes to destinations including Buenos Aires, Havana and New York."

This partnership is the latest 'Always Getting Better' enhancement as we continue our journey to becoming the Amazon of travel. We continue to speak to a number of other long haul airlines about potential connecting flight partnerships and we look forward to offering our 130m customers an even greater choice and range of long haul services in 2018.

The chief executive of Globalia, which owns Air Europa, said the partnership allowed it to "strengthen our competitiveness", doubling Air Europa's connectivity in Europe, adding 53 cities.

Ryanair, which became Europe's largest airline by passenger numbers in January, has been vocal about its plans to pivot growth away from Britain in the wake of the Brexit vote, instead planning for "prudent" growth there.

Last month, the carrier's finance director Neil Sorahan said Ryanair could halt flights out of the UK "for a period of time" due to Brexit uncertainty hitting demand.

Sorahan warned that there could be "no flights for a period of time between UK and Europe" if no bilateral arrangements are made.

Read more: Ryanair launches new Stansted routes - but warns over Brexit (again)

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