Belfast International sold

By | Category: Travel news

Links between Ecuador and Belfast in the future?

Belfast International Airport has been sold to a US company that has airports in Costa Rica and Ecuador. The company, ADC&HAS Airports Worldwide, which is based in Houston, Texas has also bought Stockholm’s Skavsta Airport at the same time.

Why does a US company operating primarily in Latin America want with airports over here? The obvious answer is that it sees a business opportunity that the previous owner didn’t or that it was such a bargain it couldn’t resist it. Maybe it is the opportunities in the US that tempted it to buy as ADC & HAS also pick up the concession for Orlando-Sanford Airport in Florida and the management for five others. Unless the previous owners, abertis, sold the whole lot as a package and refused to break it up in which case you might expect Belfast and Stockholm to be offloaded as soon as possible, what might it mean for us passengers?

It could be quite exciting for the Northern Irish as this new owner is part owned by Houston International Airport. Could pressure be put on US airlines to set up a service between the two? There is no link to Stockholm either. But the really exciting ones would be to Ecuador and Costa Rica. These two countries have lots of appeal to travellers. Ecuador has the Galapagos and the Tren Crucero, the luxury train that started last month running tours through stunning landscapes and stopping off in native villages on its way from Quito to Guayaquil. Costa Rica has been a big destination for Americans and Canadians but here it is largely unknown unless you are volunteering abroad in a gap year. But it always crops up in our lists of where people would like to go. Irene enjoyed her brief stay there in 2012.

So will this be just another case of musical chairs at another airport or will it have real benefit to passengers in Northern Ireland? Only time will tell.

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