After seeing the success of airports in Shannon, Waterford Airport is located in the South East of Ireland. Cork and Dublin, the Chamber President decided that in 1977, Waterford could benefit from an airport too. The airport is located a 15-minute drive from the historic town of Waterford, which also happens to be the oldest city in Ireland, being founded by the Vikings in 914 AD. The airport is easily accessible by car along the R708.
Waterford Airport opened in 1981 with a runway fit for a single and a twin-engined light aircraft and a portable cabin as the terminal building. A year later, the airport was finally given its full flying wings when the Department of Transport and Power sanctioned a licence for international flights. In 1982, Aviar provided the first domestic passenger service as a stop between Cork and Dublin Airport. Since 1982, the airport has been home to Waterford Aero Club, with the ambition of bringing pilots and enthusiasts together to expand the aviation community.
In 1985, Waterford's first scheduled international air service left the airport for Gatwick on Monday, 8 July. Those using the newly established Ryanair service between Waterford and London-Gatwick ran well ahead of expectations, as it was only the second week. In February 2010, an Economic Impact Assessment of Waterford Airport was published, which highlighted and reinforced the airport's importance to the Southeast Region.
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