The Commission for Aviation Regulation Publishes its Annual Report 2018

(22 Jul 2019)




PRESS RELEASE, 22 July 2019


  • Record passenger numbers at Dublin Airport saw approval of €269.3 million capital investment programme with €2 billion draft capital investment plan under consideration
  • 4,420 passenger queries handled resulting in 2,319 valid complaints – a 56% increase on 2017.
  • Establishment of Passenger Advisory Group for Dublin Airport consisting of 13 organisations representing the diverse range of passengers at the airport.
  • CAR licensed 16 air carriers, 45 ground handlers and 231 tour operators and travel agents.
  • Progress made in merger of Commission with Safety Regulation Division of IAA to form new regulator in 2020.

The Commission for Aviation Regulation (CAR) has today published its 2018 Annual Report.

CAR is Ireland’s independent economic regulator of aviation. Its function is to oversee airport charges and slot regulation to ensure the best interests of passengers are served. It also licenses and approves airlines, ground-handlers, travel agents and tour operators while investigating complaints on air passenger rights and ensuring EU regulations governing these rights are enforced.

In June 2018, CAR approved a capital programme of €269.3 million to relieve capacity constraints at Dublin airport due to ongoing and strong growth. In November, Dublin Airport also submitted a €2 billion capital plan for consultation with airlines and other stakeholders. CAR will publish a decision on the maximum level of airport charges at Dublin Airport in autumn 2019. In September 2018, a Passenger Advisory Group was established to improve the level of direct passenger focused input, and consequently our understanding of passenger requirements at Dublin Airport. It consists of 13 organisations, representing the airport’s diverse passenger range.

CAR received 2,319 valid complaints in relation to air passenger rights in 2018 which is a 56% increase on the previous year. CAR also handled 4,420 queries from the public. As a result of the increased volume CAR has further strengthened its Air Passenger Rights team for 2019.

Throughout the year we worked closely with DTTAS and our IAA colleagues to progress the regulatory reform work which will result in the merger of the Commission and the Safety Regulation Division of the IAA. To date, work has moved forward in the areas of organisational design and draft legislation. We will continue with this work in 2019 with the objective of having a new aviation regulator in 2020.

Launching the report Commissioner Cathy Mannion said:

‘The mission of the Commission for Aviation Regulation is to protect the interests of air passengers. This mission crosses all our functions, from ensuring passengers at Dublin Airport are offered efficient and high-quality airport services to ensuring that customers of airlines, travel agents and tour operators have an appropriate level of protection. We are particularly proud of a number of achievements in 2018 such as the establishment of the Passenger Advisory Group for Dublin Airport that will make a difference to future planning and services at the airport. We also ensured passenger rights were respected and the handling of valid complaints meant that we obtained €458,817 for passengers affected by flight disruption. 2019 will be an important year as we seek to ensure that airport charges are efficient and in passengers’ best interests. It will also see CAR making further progress towards our merger with the Safety Regulation Division of the IAA'

In 2018, CAR licensed and financially monitored; 16 air carriers, 45 ground handlers, and 231 tour operators and travel agents.

CAR operates a scheme for the travel trade that compensates qualifying customers if a tour operator or travel agent goes out of business. 2019 will see the completion of the review of this travel trade insolvency protection arrangement and CAR will be advising the Government on any necessary amendments.

The full report can be found here:



For further information or to arrange an interview please contact:

Johnny Fallon on (085) 8895103 or

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