SAN FRANCISCO INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT (BCN) – Direct international flights between San Francisco International Airport and Dublin Airport in Ireland are returning for the first time since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, airport officials said Friday.

The direct flights, operated by Irish airline Aer Lingus, will launch just in time for the holiday season, starting on Dec. 12, going through January 12.

During that time, Aer Lingus will operate four direct flights a week, on Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday. Also, before and after Christmas, between Dec. 16 through Dec. 18 and Dec. 30 and Jan. 1, Aer Lingus will operate two additional flights per week.

After the holiday season, starting on Feb. 25, Aer Lingus will then resume offering four direct flights daily between SFO and Dublin Airport.

According to officials with Dublin Airport, the return of direct flights will not only help family members in Ireland and the West Coast reconnect, but it will also benefit Irish businesses, many of which work with tech companies in the Bay Area.

“San Francisco is the global tech center of the world and many of the companies based there have offices in Ireland,” Dublin Airport Managing Director Vincent Harrison said in a statement. “This direct route will further grow tourism and trade between Ireland and the U.S. and provide greater choice and flexibility for both business and leisure passengers.”

Aer Lingus Chief Customer Officer Susanne Carberry said, “This is an important milestone in the recovery of our business and will no doubt be very meaningful to those people with connections on the West Coast and businesses with connections in San Francisco itself.”

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