Greek Aegean Airline Facing Ryanair


The increase in tourism in Greece has led to significant changes in domestic and foreign air travel. This has encouraged foreign airline companies to invest in Greece and to add new routes, competing directly with Greek airline Aegean-Olympic.

Low cost carrier Ryanair, announced yesterday its intention to strengthen its presence in Greece by creating new bases in Athens and Thessaloniki in April, offering domestic and foreign services. Ryanair officials wasted no time in pointing the finger at Aegean-Olympic for the “domestic monopoly which harms Greece’s economy.” Furthermore they stated that  “Athens does not fully services the flight needs,” and “because of the high prices, flight demand decreases”.

Ryanair is betting on Greece with really cheap tickets of 12 euros for Athens to Thessaloniki.

According to Aegean, “the creation of new bases in Athens and Thessaloniki confirms the existence of an extremely competitive market within the frame of European airlines. This is exactly the reason for which the two largest Greek airline companies, Aegean and Olympic Air, were merged. The merger happened in order for a Greek airline company to develop and operate effectively so that it could represent our country in the European market.”

Ryanair is expected to offer about 154 flights from Athens and 212 from Thessaloniki, per week. The company also claims that its new expansion plans will lead to the creation of more than 1,200 jobs at its new base in Athens.



  1. Aegean and Olympic sounds like a monopoly! Tough luck – welcome Ryanair! Too many unhealthy monopolies in Greece.

  2. Ryanair has been running dozens of routes from its Xania base for a couple of years, many to places not serviced by Aegean/Olympic. Now that it’s been able to add Athens/Xania to its routes we might see some proper competition between Crete and the mainland. There are existing flights Xania/Thessaloniki 6 days/week but adding 2 daily to Athens could make a big difference.

  3. Ryanair is certainly welcome, especially in Athens. But I would like to see more Ryanair international flights landing in Athens the next years. The actual monopoly are the “big” European routes, e.g. Athens-Frankfurt. On this route, Lufthansa asks for crazy prices, e.g. 300-330 €. Aegean “could” keep their prices lower (they also fly on this route) but since they are BOTH in the Star Alliance they cannot fight one another. I would like to see an Athens-Frankfurt Hahn by Ryanair soon, and let’s see if Lufthansa and Aegean then ask for 350 €, when Ryanair has 15 € offers.
    Long live Ryanair!