Is Aer Lingus a Good Airline? Guide to All Terminals | Domestic and International

Is Aer Lingus a Good Airline

Is Aer Lingus a Good Airline? Guide to All Terminals | Domestic and International

In an age where flying has become as commonplace as taking a bus, the quality of the airline you choose can significantly impact your travel experience. Whether a seasoned traveler or booking your first international flight, you’ve likely come across Aer Lingus—Ireland’s flag carrier and second-largest airline after Ryanair. Founded in 1936, Aer Lingus stands as one of the oldest airlines still in operation today, and it serves as a significant player in connecting Ireland to Europe, North America, and beyond.

But is Aer Lingus a good airline? With a history spanning over eight decades, Aer Lingus has undoubtedly seen many changes in the aviation industry and has evolved. Yet, it remains an airline that some people swear by and others may avoid due to mixed reviews.

In this comprehensive guide, we will not only answer whether Aer Lingus is a good airline but also provide you with everything you need to know about the terminals they operate in—domestic and international. We’ll walk you through the arrival and departure experiences and the facilities you can expect to find.

Is Aer Lingus a Good Airline

Are you considering a trip with Aer Lingus and want to know what you are signing up for? Or are you simply interested in learning more about Ireland’s beloved airline? This guide is for you.

Stay with us as we embark on this journey, from the check-in counters of Dublin to the arrivals halls of New York’s JFK, exploring the legacy, current standing, and terminal guides of Aer Lingus.

So, how good is the Aer Lingus flying experience? Based on various aspects of the flight, from seating and entertainment to customer service, Aer Lingus provides a solid and generally well-regarded flying experience, especially for those on transatlantic journeys. While it may not be the most luxurious option in the skies, Aer Lingus is a reliable choice for those prioritizing a balance between comfort and cost.

Aer Lingus at a Glance

As Ireland’s second-largest airline and flag carrier, Aer Lingus holds a unique position in the aviation industry. Here, we present a snapshot of the airline, offering quick facts outlining its scale, operations, and market presence.

Fleet and Network

  • Fleet Size: Approximately 50 aircraft (as of 2021)
  • Destinations: Aer Lingus flies to over 90 destinations across Europe, North America, and the Middle East.
  • Hub: Main hub at Dublin Airport (DUB), with significant operations at Cork Airport (ORK) and Shannon Airport (SNN).

Affiliation and Partnerships

  • Ownership: A subsidiary of International Airlines Group (IAG), which also owns British Airways and Iberia.
  • Partnerships: Aer Lingus is not part of any major global airline alliance but has extensive codeshare and interline partnerships with several airlines worldwide.

On-Board Experience

  • Cabin Classes: Aer Lingus offers a range of travel classes, including Economy Class, Economy Plus, and Business Class.
  • In-Flight Entertainment: Aer Lingus provides an extensive library of movies, TV shows, music, and games on its long-haul flights.

Financial and Operational Health

  • Annual Passengers: Pre-COVID, Aer Lingus was transporting approximately 12 million passengers annually.
  • Reputation: It is known for competitive fares, particularly on transatlantic routes, and is generally well-regarded for its service standards.

Sustainability Initiatives

  • Green Flying: Aer Lingus is committed to sustainable flying. It has implemented various measures to reduce its carbon footprint, including investing in newer, more fuel-efficient aircraft and supporting carbon offset projects.

The Aer Lingus Flying Experience | How Good Is It?

When choosing an airline for your journey, the in-flight experience can be a make-or-break factor. Here, we look at what flying with Aer Lingus is like assessing everything from seat comfort to the meal service. Is it a smooth ride? Let’s find out.

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Comfort and Seating

  • Economy Class: Aer Lingus’s economy seats are designed for comfort, with adjustable headrests and decent legroom. The configuration ensures that passengers have personal space that aligns with industry standards.
  • Business Class: For those willing to splurge, Aer Lingus’s Business Class offers lie-flat seats, increased privacy, and more personalized service.

In-Flight Entertainment and Connectivity

  • Entertainment System: Aer Lingus’s long-haul flights have an extensive in-flight entertainment system, offering a wide selection of movies, TV shows, music, and games to entertain passengers.
  • Wi-Fi Service: Wi-Fi is available on select flights, allowing passengers to stay connected in the air, although this may come at an additional cost.

Food and Beverage Service

  • Economy Class: On transatlantic flights, meals are included, and passengers can expect a reasonable variety of food options. On shorter European flights, a buy-on-board program offers snacks and beverages for purchase.
  • Business Class: Premium passengers can expect a fine dining experience with gourmet meals, complimentary alcoholic beverages, and attentive service.

Customer Service

  • Aer Lingus is generally known for its friendly and helpful crew. The airline tends to receive positive feedback for its staff’s professionalism and warmth.

Special Services

  • Aer Lingus provides special services for passengers with specific needs, including assistance for those with reduced mobility and amenities for families traveling with young children.

Overall Satisfaction

  • Customer reviews and ratings for Aer Lingus vary. Still, the airline generally holds a solid reputation for providing a clean, comfortable, and reliable service, particularly on transatlantic routes. Some passengers cite occasional delays and issues with luggage. Still, the airline maintains a high level of customer satisfaction.

How Does It Compare?

  • Compared to budget airlines, Aer Lingus offers a more comfortable and comprehensive service, particularly on long-haul flights. Compared to other flag carriers, its fares are competitive, and the service is often reviewed as being on par or better than average.

Safety Record, Accident History, Awards, and Ratings of Aer Lingus

When choosing an airline, safety is often the top priority for passengers. Let us look closely at Aer Lingus’s safety record, delve into its accident history, and explore the accolades and ratings the airline has received over the years.

Safety Record

  • Overview: Aer Lingus has maintained a strong safety record throughout its extensive history, a testament to its commitment to maintaining high safety standards. The airline complies with all international safety regulations and regularly undergoes safety audits.
  • Safety Audits: Aer Lingus has successfully passed the IATA Operational Safety Audit (IOSA), an internationally recognized evaluation system designed to assess an airline’s operational management and control systems.

Accident History

  • Past Incidents: While Aer Lingus has had a few incidents in its long history, it has had a remarkably low number of accidents compared to its extensive years of operation. Notable accidents have been rare and occurred several decades ago.
  • Recent Performance: In recent years, Aer Lingus has maintained a record free of any significant accidents, reinforcing its reputation as a safe and reliable carrier.

Awards and Ratings

  • Service Quality Awards: Aer Lingus has received several awards for its high service standards, including recognition for its Business Class service and in-flight entertainment.
  • Safety Ratings: Leading aviation safety and product rating agency Skytrax has consistently rated Aer Lingus highly for safety. As of the last available data, the airline held a strong safety rating.
  • Customer Satisfaction Ratings: Aer Lingus generally receives positive customer reviews and maintains a solid rating on various travel and airline review platforms. Passengers often highlight the airline’s friendly staff and reliable service.

Industry Recognitions

  • Aer Lingus has been commended for its environmental initiatives, including efforts to reduce its carbon footprint through investment in more fuel-efficient aircraft.
  • The airline has also been recognized for its exemplary handling of the COVID-19 crisis, implementing stringent health and safety measures to protect passengers and staff.
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Aer Lingus’ Terminals: A Comprehensive Guide

Flying with Aer Lingus soon? Here is a comprehensive guide to the terminals Aer Lingus operates from at critical airports. Hence, you know exactly where to go and what to expect when you arrive.

Dublin Airport (DUB) – Aer Lingus’ Main Hub

  • Terminal: Aer Lingus operates primarily from Terminal 2 at Dublin Airport.
  • Facilities and Services: Terminal 2 is modern and spacious, offering many shops, restaurants, lounges, and essential services, such as currency exchange and car rental desks.

London Heathrow Airport (LHR)

  • Terminal: Aer Lingus flights typically depart from Terminal 2 at Heathrow, also known as The Queen’s Terminal.
  • Facilities and Services: Terminal 2 is well-equipped with various dining options, duty-free shops, lounges, and convenient services such as free Wi-Fi and currency exchange.

New York JFK Airport (JFK)

  • Terminal: Aer Lingus operates from Terminal 5 at JFK.
  • Facilities and Services: Terminal 5 is known for its impressive array of shops and restaurants, as well as amenities such as free Wi-Fi, lounges, and more.

Boston Logan International Airport (BOS)

  • Terminal: Aer Lingus flights at Logan Airport generally depart from Terminal C.
  • Facilities and Services: Terminal C offers a wealth of dining and shopping options, lounges, and practical services for travelers.

San Francisco International Airport (SFO)

  • Terminal: Aer Lingus typically operates from the Gate G, International Terminal at SFO.
  • Facilities and Services: This terminal is home to a wide selection of dining and retail options, as well as several lounges and essential traveler services.

Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD)

  • Terminal: Aer Lingus usually operates from Terminal 5 at O’Hare.
  • Facilities and Services: Terminal 5 hosts various shops, restaurants, and lounges, as well as valuable services for international travelers.

Aer Lingus (Los Angeles) Lax Terminal

Terminal: Aer Lingus flights operated from the (TBIT) Tom Bradley International Terminal B at LAX. However, terminal assignments can change, so it is advisable to check your ticket or the Aer Lingus website before your flight.

Other Key Airports

  • For other major airports, including Orlando (MCO), and more, Aer Lingus generally operates from international terminals, which are well-equipped with a wide range of facilities and services for travelers.

Tips for Navigating Aer Lingus’ Terminals

  • Check-in Time: Make sure to arrive well ahead of your departure time. Aer Lingus recommends that passengers arrive at least 3 hours before international flights.
  • Aer Lingus App: Consider downloading the Aer Lingus mobile app for real-time flight updates and mobile boarding passes.
  • Lounge Access: If you’re flying in Business Class or are an eligible AerClub member, you may have access to Aer Lingus lounges or partner lounges at various airports.

Comparing Aer Lingus to Other Airlines

When planning a trip, it’s natural to compare airlines to find the best fit for your travel needs and budget. Here’s how Aer Lingus compares to both full-service carriers and budget airlines in various aspects:

Pricing and Fare Options

  • Aer Lingus: Known for offering competitive fares, particularly on transatlantic routes. Provides a range of fare options, from the basic ‘Saver’ fares to the more inclusive ‘Advantage’ and Business Class fares.
  • Full-Service Carriers: Aer Lingus fares are generally competitive compared to major full-service carriers, particularly on transatlantic routes.
  • Budget Airlines: While Aer Lingus fares might be higher than budget airlines, they often include more services and amenities as standard.

In-flight Comfort and Seating

  • Aer Lingus: Offers a standard level of comfort in Economy Class, with an option to upgrade to Business Class for lie-flat seats and additional space.
  • Full-Service Carriers: Similar comfort level in Economy Class, with more premium options in higher classes.
  • Budget Airlines: Aer Lingus generally provides more legroom and comfort than budget carriers, which often have tighter seating.
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In-flight Entertainment and Amenities

  • Aer Lingus: Offers a comprehensive in-flight entertainment system on long-haul flights and provides meals on transatlantic routes.
  • Full-Service Carriers: Typically offer a similar or more extensive range of in-flight entertainment and meals included in the ticket price.
  • Budget Airlines: In-flight entertainment and meals are rare or come at an additional cost.

Baggage Allowance

  • Aer Lingus: Offers a reasonable baggage allowance, with options to add more. Transatlantic flights generally include a checked bag as standard.
  • Full-Service Carriers: Similar baggage allowances to Aer Lingus, often with more generous allowances in higher fare classes.
  • Budget Airlines: Baggage allowances are typically more restrictive, and fees for checked and sometimes carry-on bags are standard.

Customer Service and Reliability

  • Aer Lingus: Known for friendly and professional service. Generally reliable with fewer delays compared to budget carriers.
  • Full-Service Carriers: Customer service is usually of a high standard, and reliability is generally reasonable.
  • Budget Airlines: Customer service can be more variable, and these airlines may have a higher incidence of delays and cancellations.

Frequent Flyer Program and Partnerships

  • Aer Lingus: AerClub is the frequent flyer program, and Aer Lingus is a part of the Aer Lingus Group (formerly a part of IAG) and has codeshare agreements with several airlines but is not part of a major global alliance like Star Alliance or Oneworld.
  • Full-Service Carriers: Typically part of major global alliances and have extensive frequent flyer programs.
  • Budget Airlines: Rarely part of major alliances and have more limited loyalty programs, if any.


In today’s diverse and competitive world of air travel, Aer Lingus has carved a unique space for itself as Ireland’s national airline. It provides a comfortable and reliable flying experience that sits between what one might expect from a budget carrier and a full-service airline.

Aer Lingus is often lauded for its competitive pricing, especially on transatlantic routes. The airline offers a range of fare options that allow passengers to choose the level of comfort and amenities they prefer, from basic Economy to a more indulgent Business Class. While it may not be the lowest-cost option, especially compared to dedicated low-cost carriers, its fares are generally reasonable and often come with fewer hidden fees and more included amenities, presenting a solid value proposition for many travelers.

A significant factor in Aer Lingus‘ favor is its longstanding reputation for safety and reliability. With a history dating back to 1936, it is one of the world’s oldest airlines, and its safety record is robust.

Customers generally report a positive flying experience with Aer Lingus, highlighting the airline’s friendly and professional staff, clean and comfortable cabins, and efficient operations. The airline’s in-flight entertainment on long-haul flights and complimentary meal service on transatlantic flights are significant perks.

Aer Lingus operates from modern and efficient terminals at major airports, ensuring that travelers can access various amenities and services before their flights. The comprehensive guide in this post should help passengers quickly navigate these terminals.

Aer Lingus sits in a unique position. It offers a level of service that is typically higher than that of budget carriers, with competitive fares that often challenge those of full-service airlines. It’s an option that many travelers find to be a ‘best of both worlds’ solution – more comfortable than a low-cost carrier without the premium price tag of a luxury airline.

In summary, is Aer Lingus a good airline? Based on its track record, the consensus is yes. It offers a blend of affordability, comfort, and reliability that appeals to many travelers. Whether you’re flying for business or leisure, short-haul or long-haul, Aer Lingus provides a compelling option worth considering for your next journey.