Direct flights from Denver to Ireland are coming next year. Here’s what we know

Irish airline Aer Lingus is expanding its U.S. operations.
3 min. read
The beloved “secret” bridge security area at Denver International Airport. Oct. 28, 2022.
Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite

Starting next spring, Denverites will be able to fly directly from Denver International Airport (DIA) to Dublin, Ireland on Aer Lingus.

The Irish airline confirmed Thursday it is expanding U.S. operations by adding new routes to Denver and Minneapolis-St. Paul. Flights from Denver will run four times per week, beginning May 17, 2024.

The direct flights from Denver to Dublin will take about 9 hours and start at $699 (though with airfare pricing in flux, that figure could rise based on the time of year and demand), according to an airline spokesperson.

With the new route, DIA now carries 28 nonstop international flight destinations.

"We're increasing our global connections," said DIA CEO Phil Washington at a press conference where the new route was announced. "There's a lot of excitement, but our renovation of Denver International Airport becomes even more important now."

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The announcement comes during a record-breaking summer travel season for DIA.

The airport logged more than 6.7 million travelers in June, marking its busiest month ever.

Heavy passenger traffic has caused headaches for travelers, especially in backed-up TSA security lines. But Washington and airline leaders say the ongoing Great Hall Project will help ease congestion and prepare the airport for booming international and domestic travel demand.

Aer Lingus CEO Lynne Embleton said in a statement that she sees the benefit of the new routes going both ways: connecting Denverites with direct routes to Europe, and connecting Europeans with outdoor opportunities and business connections in the U.S.

"With Dublin's geographic position as the gateway to Europe, pre-clearance facilities at the airport and the strong, long established Irish American ties, Aer Lingus is ideally placed to connect people and places across the Atlantic," Embleton wrote Thursday.

In the press release, Aer Lingus spokesperson Lara Sexton specifically mentioned Denver's technology, renewable energy and aerospace sectors, as well as the city's "rich Irish heritage."

"Denver and Minneapolis-St Paul are significant business destinations within the US and the new Aer Lingus routes facilitate corporate links and connectivity between Europe and North America, through our Dublin Hub," Embleton said. "Denver's position as the 'Gateway to the Rockies' and its outdoor appeal, from world class skiing to hiking, opens up a whole new US experience to leisure travelers from Ireland and Europe."

Airport leaders and Denver Mayor Mike Johnston gathered alongside Irish community members at the City and County Building Thursday to announce the new Dublin route.

Johnston identified himself as one of more than 620,000 Coloradans who share Irish ancestry.

"My family is from Ireland on both sides," Johnston said. "In addition to reconnecting families back to their Irish homeland, we also know this is an incredible economic opportunity."

The direct route will drive more than $65 million in economic impacts in Colorado and bring more than 400 jobs to the city, Johnston said.

Irish community members said the connection would help boost local cultural events and tourism in both Denver and Dublin.

The idea to link the two cities emerged about 10 years ago when community members voiced the idea to previous airport leaders, said Jim Lyons, honorary consul of Ireland in Denver.

"Irish have been in Colorado for over 200 years as farmers, ranchers, miners in Leadville and many other roles," Lyons said. "You have no idea what this means to us."

Tickets for the first direct flights from Denver to Dublin are on sale now.

This article has been updated with comments from Mayor Mike Johnston, DIA CEO Phil Washington and Ireland's honorary consul in Denver. 

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