Ryanair abandons plans to operate transatlantic flights

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Ryanair planeImage source, Getty Images
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Ryanair currently operates short-haul flights, mostly within Europe

Budget airline Ryanair has abandoned plans to operate transatlantic flights, just days after it said its board had approved the measure.

In a statement, Ryanair said it "has not considered or approved any transatlantic project and does not intend to do so".

On Monday, Ryanair had said its board approved a plan to operate budget flights to the US within five years.

Ryanair first aired the plans in 2008.

Earlier in the week, a spokesperson told the BBC long-haul flights were "dependent on attaining viable long-haul aircraft and we estimate that's four to five years away".

It said it would like to offer low-cost flights between 12 to 14 European cities and the same number of US cities.

Currently, the transatlantic route is dominated by long-established airlines, with British Airways and American Airlines the main players.

Oslo-based low-cost airline Norwegian Air Shuttle began a service to the US in 2013, but recently blamed the costs of its expansion, including disputes with US regulators, for its first loss in eight years.