Thessaloniki familiarly known as Thessalonica, Salonica or Salonika, is the second-largest city in Greece, with over 1 million inhabitants in its metropolitan area, the capital of Greek Macedonia, the administrative region of Central Macedonia and the Decentralized Administration of Macedonia and Thrace. Its nickname is η Συμπρωτεύουσα "the co-capital", a reference to its historical status as the Συμβασιλεύουσα or "co-reigning" city of the Eastern Roman Empire, alongside Constantinople. Thessaloniki is located at the northwest corner of the Aegean Sea, it is bounded on the west by the delta of the Axios/Vardar. The municipality of Thessaloniki, the historical center, had a population of 325,182 in 2011, while the Thessaloniki Urban Area had a population of 824,676 and the Thessaloniki Metropolitan Area had 1,030,338 inhabitants in 2011, it is Greece's second major economic, industrial and political centre. The city is renowned for its festivals and vibrant cultural life in general, is considered to be Greece's cultural capital.
Events such as the Thessaloniki International Fair and the Thessaloniki International Film Festival are held annually, while the city hosts the largest bi-annual meeting of the Greek diaspora. Thessaloniki was the 2014 European Youth Capital; the city of Thessaloniki was founded in 315 BC by Cassander of Macedon. An important metropolis by the Roman period, Thessaloniki was the second largest and wealthiest city of the Byzantine Empire, it was conquered by the Ottomans in 1430, passed from the Ottoman Empire to Greece on 8 November 1912. It is home to numerous notable Byzantine monuments, including the Paleochristian and Byzantine monuments of Thessaloniki, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, as well as several Roman and Sephardic Jewish structures; the city's main university, Aristotle University, is the largest in Greece and the Balkans. Thessaloniki is a popular tourist destination in Greece. In 2013, National Geographic Magazine included Thessaloniki in its top tourist destinations worldwide, while in 2014 Financial Times FDI magazine declared Thessaloniki as the best mid-sized European city of the future for human capital and lifestyle.
Among street photographers, the center of Thessaloniki is considered the most popular destination for street photography in Greece. The original name of the city was Θεσσαλονίκη Thessaloníkē, it was named after princess Thessalonike of Macedon, the half sister of Alexander the Great, whose name means "Thessalian victory", from Θεσσαλός'Thessalos', Νίκη'victory', honoring the Macedonian victory at the Battle of Crocus Field. Minor variants are found, including Θετταλονίκη Thettaloníkē, Θεσσαλονίκεια Thessaloníkeia, Θεσσαλονείκη Thessaloneíkē, Θεσσαλονικέων Thessalonikéōn; the name Σαλονίκη Saloníki is first attested in Greek in the Chronicle of the Morea, is common in folk songs, but it must have originated earlier, as al-Idrisi called it Salunik in the 12th century. It is the basis for the city's name in other languages: Солѹнь in Old Church Slavonic, סלוניקה in Ladino, Selânik سلانیك in Ottoman Turkish and Selanik in modern Turkish, Salonicco in Italian, Solun or Солун in the local and neighboring South Slavic languages, Салоники in Russian, Sãrunã in Aromanian, Salonica or Salonika in English.
Thessaloniki was revived as the city's official name in 1912, when it joined the Kingdom of Greece during the Balkan Wars. In local speech, the city's name is pronounced with a dark and deep L characteristic of Modern Macedonian accent; the name is abbreviated as Θεσ/νίκη. The city was founded around 315 BC by the King Cassander of Macedon, on or near the site of the ancient town of Therma and 26 other local villages, he named it after his wife Thessalonike, a half-sister of Alexander the Great and princess of Macedonia as daughter of Philip II. Under the kingdom of Macedonia the city retained its own autonomy and parliament and evolved to become the most important city in Macedonia. After the fall of the Kingdom of Macedonia in 168 BC, in 148 BC Thessalonica was made the capital of the Roman province of Macedonia. Thessalonica became a free city of the Roman Republic under Mark Antony in 41 BC, it grew to be an important trade-hub located on the Via Egnatia, the road connecting Dyrrhachium with Byzantium, which facilitated trade between Thessaloniki and great centers of commerce such as Rome and Byzantium.
Thessaloniki lay at the southern end of the main north-south route through the Balkans along the valleys of the Morava and Axios river valleys, thereby linking the Balkans with the rest of Greece. The city became the capital of one of the four Roman districts of Macedonia, it became the capital of all the Greek provinces of the Roman Empire because of the city's importance in the Balkan peninsula. At the time of the Roman Empire, about 50 A. D. Thessaloniki was one of the early centers of Christianity. Paul wrote two letters to the new church at Thessaloniki, preserved in the Biblical canon as First and Second Thessalonians; some scholars hold that the First Epistle to the Thessalonians is the first written book of the New Testament. In 306 AD, Thessaloniki acquired a patron saint, St. Demetrius, a Christian whom Galerius is said to have put to death. Most scholars
Niš is the third largest city in Serbia and the administrative center of the Nišava District. According to the 2011 census, the city proper has a population of 187,544, while its administrative area has a population of 260,237 inhabitants. Niš has long been a crossroads between West. Founded by the Celtic Scordisci in 279 BC, the city would serve as the birthplace of three Roman emperors: Constantine the Great, the first Christian emperor and the founder of Constantinople. Playing a prominent role in the history of the Byzantine Empire, the city's past would earn it the nickname The Emperor's City. After about 400 years of Ottoman rule, the city was liberated in 1878 and became part of the Principality of Serbia, though not without great bloodshed—remnants of which can be found throughout the city. Today, Niš is one of the most important economic centers in Serbia in the electronics, mechanical engineering and tobacco industries. Constantine the Great Airport is Niš's international airport. In 2013, the city was host to the celebration of 1700 years of Constantine's Edict of Milan.
The town was named after the Nišava River. It was first named Navissos by Celtic tribes in the 3rd century BC rom this term comes the Latin Naissus, the Greek Nysos and the Slavic Niš. Legend has it that Niš was founded by a certain Prince Nisa, who built it using the nearby Humska Čuka stone; the name is rendered as Nish or Nissa in English. Archaeological evidence shows Neolithic settlements in the city and its surroundings dating from 5,000 to 2,000 BC. A notable archaeological site is Humska Čuka, in the nearby settlement of Hum. In the Iron Age, theThracians dominated the region, with one of their chief settlements being the nearby Aiadava. In 279 BC, during the Gallic invasion of the Balkans, the Celtic Scordisci defeated the Triballi and founded the city as Navissos. During the Roman conquest of the Balkans between 168 and 75 BC, the city, known as Naissus in Latin, was used as a base of operations. Naissus was first mentioned in Roman documents near the beginning of the 2nd century CE, was considered a place worthy of note in the Geography of Ptolemy of Alexandria.
The Romans occupied the town during the Dardanian campaign, set up a legionary camp in the city. The city, called refugia and vici in pre-Roman relation, as a result of its strategic position developed as an important garrison and market town in the province of Moesia Superior. In 272 AD, the future Emperor Constantine. Constantine created the Dacia Mediterranea province, of which Naissus was the capital, which included Remesiana on the Via Militaris and the towns of Pautalia and Germania, he lived in Naissus from 316-322. In 364 AD, the imperial Villa Mediana 3 km was the site where emperors Valentinian and Valens met and divided the Roman Empire into halves which they would rule as co-emperors It was besieged by the Huns in 441 and devastated in 448, again in 480 when the partially-rebuilt town was demolished by the Barbarians. Byzantine Emperor Justinian I restored the town but it was destroyed by the Avars once again; the Slavs, in their campaign against Byzantium, conquered Niš and settled here in 540.
In 805, the town and its surroundings were taken by Bulgarian Emperor Krum. In the 11th century Byzantium reclaimed control over the surrounding area. During the People's Crusade, on July 3, 1096, Peter the Hermit clashed with Byzantine forces at Niš. Manuel I fortified the town, but under his successor Andronikos I it was seized by the Hungarian king Béla III. Byzantine control was reestablished, but in 1185 it fell under Serbian control. By 1188, Niš became the capital of Serbian king Stefan Nemanja. On July 27, 1189, Nemanja received German emperor Frederick Barbarossa and his 100,000 crusaders at Niš. Niš is mentioned in descriptions of Serbia under Vukan in 1202. In 1203, Kaloyan of Bulgaria annexed Niš. Stefan Nemanjić regained the region; the fall of the Serbian Empire, conquered by Ottoman Sultan Murad I in 1385, decided the fate of Niš as well. After a 25-day-long siege the city fell to the Turks, it was returned to Serbian rule in 1443. Niš again fell under Ottoman rule in 1448, remained thusly for 241 years.
During Ottoman rule Niš was a seat of civil administration. A Silesian traveler stated in 1596 that the route from Sofia to Niš was littered with corpses and described the gates of Niš as bedecked with the freshly-severed heads of poor Bulgarian peasants. In 1689 Niš was seized by the Austrian army during the Great Turkish War, but the Turks regained it in 1690. In 1737, Niš was again seized by the Austrians, who attempted to rebuild the fortifications around the city. In that same year, the Turks would reclaim the city without resistance. During the First Serbian Uprising in 1809, Serbian revolutionaries attempted to liberate Niš in the famous Battle of Čegar. After the defeat of the Serbian forces, the Ottoman commander of Niš ordered the heads of the slain Serbs mounted on a tower to serve as a warning; the tower is known as the Skull Tower. In 1821, the Ottomans arrested the Bishop of Niš, Milentija, as well as 200 Serbian patriots, on charges of preparing an uprising in the Niš area in support of the Greek War of Independence.
On June 13 of that year, Bishop Milentija and other Serbian
Skopje is the capital and largest city of North Macedonia. It is the country's political, cultural and academic center; the territory of Skopje has been inhabited since at least 4000 BC. A Paeonian city, Scupi became the capital of Dardania in the second century BC. On the eve of the 1st century AD, the settlement was seized by the Romans and became a military camp; when the Roman Empire was divided into eastern and western halves in 395 AD, Scupi came under Byzantine rule from Constantinople. During much of the early medieval period, the town was contested between the Byzantines and the Bulgarian Empire, whose capital it was between 972 and 992. From 1282, the town was part of the Serbian Empire and acted as its capital city from 1346 to 1371. In 1392, Skopje was conquered by the Ottoman Turks who called it Üsküb, with this name being in use in English for a time; the town stayed under Ottoman control for over 500 years, serving as the capital of pashasanjak of Üsküp and the Vilayet of Kosovo.
At that time the city was famous for its oriental architecture. In 1912, it was annexed by the Kingdom of Serbia during the Balkan Wars. During the First World War the city was seized by the Bulgarian Kingdom, after this war, it became part of the newly formed Kingdom of Serbs and Slovenes becoming the capital of the Vardarska banovina. In the Second World War the city was conquered by the Bulgarian Army, part of the Axis powers. In 1944, it became the capital city of Democratic Macedonia, a federal state, part of Democratic Federal Yugoslavia; the city developed after World War II, but this trend was interrupted in 1963 when it was hit by a disastrous earthquake. In 1991, it became the capital city of an independent Macedonia. Skopje is located on the upper course of the Vardar River, is located on a major north-south Balkan route between Belgrade and Athens, it is a center for metal-processing, timber, textile and printing industries. Industrial development of the city has been accompanied by development of the trade and banking sectors, as well as an emphasis on the fields of transportation and sport.
According to the last official count from 2002, Skopje had a population of 506,926 inhabitants. Skopje is located in the north of the country, in the center of the Balkan peninsula, halfway between Belgrade and Athens; the city was built in the Skopje valley, oriented on a west-east axis, along the course of the Vardar river, which flows into the Aegean Sea in Greece. The valley is 20 kilometres wide and it is limited by several mountain ranges to the North and South; these ranges limit the urban expansion of Skopje, which spreads along the Vardar and the Serava, a small river which comes from the North. In its administrative boundaries, the City of Skopje stretches for more than 33 kilometres, but it is only 10 kilometres wide. Skopje is 245 m above sea level and covers 571.46 km2. The urbanised area only covers 337 km2, with a density of 65 inhabitants per hectare. Skopje, in its administrative limits, encompasses many villages and other settlements, including Dračevo, Gorno Nerezi and Bardovci.
According to the 2002 census, the City of Skopje comprised 506,926 inhabitants. The City of Skopje reaches the Kosovo border to the North-East. Clockwise, it is bordered by the Macedonian municipalities of Čučer-Sandevo, Aračinovo, Studeničani, Sopište, Želino and Jegunovce; the Vardar river, which flows through Skopje, is at 60 kilometres from its source near Gostivar. In Skopje, its average discharge is 51 m3/s, with a wide amplitude depending on seasons, between 99.6 m3/s in May and 18.7 m3/s in July. The water temperature is comprised between 18.1 °C in July. Several rivers meet the Vardar within the city boundaries; the largest is the Treska, 130 kilometres long. It crosses the Matka Canyon before reaching the Vardar on the western extremity of the City of Skopje; the Lepenec, coming from Kosovo, flows into the Vardar on the northwestern end of the urban area. The Serava coming from the North, had flowed through the Old Bazaar until the 1960s, when it was diverted towards the West because its waters were polluted.
It met the Vardar close to the seat of the Macedonian Academy of Sciences and Arts. Nowadays, it flows into the Vardar near the ruins of Scupi; the Markova Reka, the source of, on Mount Vodno, meets the Vardar at the eastern extremity of the city. These three rivers are less than 70 kilometres long; the city of Skopje comprises two artificial lakes, located on the Treska. The lake Matka is the result of the construction of a dam in the Matka Canyon in the 1930s, the Treska lake was dug for leisure purpose in 1978. Three small natural lakes can be found on the northeastern edge of the urban area; the river Vardar caused many floods, such as in 1962, when its outflow reached 1110 m3/s−1. Several works have been carried since Byzantine times to limit the risks, since the construction of the Kozjak dam on the Treska in 1994, the flood risk is close to zero; the subsoil contains a large water table, alimented by
Zagreb is the capital and the largest city of Croatia. It is located in the northwest of the country, along the Sava river, at the southern slopes of the Medvednica mountain. Zagreb lies at an elevation of 122 m above sea level; the estimated population of the city in 2018 is 810,003. The population of the Zagreb urban agglomeration is about 1.2 million a quarter of the total population of Croatia. Zagreb is a city with a rich history dating from the Roman times to the present day; the oldest settlement located in the vicinity of the city was the Roman Andautonia, in today's Ščitarjevo. The name "Zagreb" is recorded in 1134, in reference to the foundation of the settlement at Kaptol in 1094. Zagreb became a free royal town in 1242. In 1851 Zagreb had Janko Kamauf. Zagreb has special status as a Croatian administrative division and is a consolidated city-county, is administratively subdivided into 17 city districts. Most of them are at a low elevation along the river Sava valley, whereas northern and northeastern city districts, such as Podsljeme and Sesvete districts are situated in the foothills of the Medvednica mountain, making the city's geographical image rather diverse.
The city extends over 30 kilometres east-west and around 20 kilometres north-south. The transport connections, concentration of industry and research institutions and industrial tradition underlie its leading economic position in Croatia. Zagreb is the seat of the central government, administrative bodies, all government ministries. All of the largest Croatian companies and scientific institutions have their headquarters in the city. Zagreb is the most important transport hub in Croatia where Central Europe, the Mediterranean and Southeast Europe meet, making the Zagreb area the centre of the road and air networks of Croatia, it is a city known for its diverse economy, high quality of living, museums and entertainment events. Its main branches of economy are the service sector; the etymology of the name Zagreb is unclear. It was used for the united city only from 1852, but it had been in use as the name of the Zagreb Diocese since the 12th century, was used for the city in the 17th century; the name is first recorded in a charter by Ostrogon archbishop Felician, dated 1134, mentioned as Zagrabiensem episcopatum.
The older form of the name is Zagrab. The modern Croatian form Zagreb is first recorded in a 1689 map by Nicolas Sanson. An older form is reflected in Hungarian Zabrag. For this, Hungarian linguist Gyula Décsy proposes the etymology of Chabrag, a well-attested hypocorism of the name Cyprian; the same form is reflected in a number such as Csepreg. The name might be derived from Proto-Slavic word * grębъ which means uplift. An Old Croatian reconstructed name *Zagrębъ is manifested through the German name of the city Agram; the name Agram was used in German in the Habsburg period. In Middle Latin and Modern Latin, Zagreb is known as Zagrabia or Mons Graecensis. In Croatian folk etymology, the name of the city has been derived from either the verb za-grab-, meaning "to scoop" or "to dig". One folk legend illustrating this derivation ties the name to a drought of the early 14th century, during which Augustin Kažotić is said to have dug a well which miraculously produced water. In another legend, a city governor is thirsty and orders a girl named Manda to "scoop" water from Manduševac well, using the imperative: zagrabi, Mando!.
The oldest settlement located near today's Zagreb was a Roman town of Andautonia, now Šćitarjevo, which existed between the 1st and the 5th century AD. The first recorded appearance of the name Zagreb is dated to 1094, at which time the city existed as two different city centres: the smaller, eastern Kaptol, inhabited by clergy and housing Zagreb Cathedral, the larger, western Gradec, inhabited by craftsmen and merchants. Gradec and Kaptol were united in 1851 by ban Josip Jelačić, credited for this, with the naming the main city square, Ban Jelačić Square in his honour. During the period of former Yugoslavia, Zagreb remained an important economic centre of the country, was the second largest city. After Croatia declared independence from Yugoslavia, Zagreb was proclaimed its capital; the history of Zagreb dates as far back as 1094 A. D. when the Hungarian King Ladislaus, returning from his campaign against Croatia, founded a diocese. Alongside the bishop's see, the canonical settlement Kaptol developed north of Zagreb Cathedral, as did the fortified settlement Gradec on the neighbouring hill.
Today the latter is one of the best preserved urban nuclei in Croatia. Both settlements came under Tatar attack in 1242; as a sign of gratitude for offering him a safe haven from the Tatars the Croatian and Hungarian King Bela IV bestowed Gradec with a Golden Bull, which offered its citizens exemption from county rule and
A low-cost carrier or low-cost airline is an airline, operated with an high emphasis on minimizing operating costs and without some of the traditional services and amenities provided in the fare, resulting in lower fares and fewer comforts. To make up for revenue lost in decreased ticket prices, the airline may charge extra fees – such as for carry-on baggage; as of July 2014, the world's largest low-cost carrier is Southwest Airlines, which operates in the United States and some surrounding areas. The term originated within the airline industry referring to airlines with a lower operating cost structure than their competitors. While the term is applied to any carrier with low ticket prices and limited services, regardless of their operating models, low-cost carriers should not be confused with regional airlines that operate short flights without service, or with full-service airlines offering some reduced fares; some airlines advertise themselves as low-cost, budget, or discount airlines while maintaining products associated with traditional mainline carrier's services—which can increase operational complexity.
These products include preferred or assigned seating, catering other items rather than basic beverages, differentiated premium cabins, satellite or ground-based Wi-Fi internet, in-flight audio and video entertainment. More the term "ultra low-cost carrier" differentiates some low-cost carriers in North America where traditional airlines offer a similar service model to low-cost carriers. Low-cost carrier business model practices vary widely; some practices are more common in certain regions, while others are universal. The common theme among all low-cost carriers is the reduction of cost and reduced overall fares compared to legacy carriers. Traditional airlines have reduced their cost using several of these practices. Most low-cost carriers operate aircraft configured with a single passenger class, most operate just a single aircraft type, so cabin and ground crew will only have to be trained to work on one type of aircraft; this is beneficial from a maintenance standpoint as spare parts and mechanics will only be dedicated to one type of aircraft.
These airlines tend to operate short-haul flights that suit the range of narrow-body planes. As of however there is a rise in demand for long range low-cost flights and the availability of next generation planes that make long haul routes more feasible for LCCs. In the past, low-cost carriers tended to operate older aircraft purchased second-hand, such as the McDonnell Douglas DC-9 and older models of the Boeing 737. Since 2000, fleets consist of the newest aircraft the Airbus A320 family and Boeing 737. Although buying new aircraft is more expensive than second-hand, new planes are cheaper to operate in the long run since they are efficient in terms of fuel, training and crew costs per passenger. In 2013, ch-aviation published a study about the fleet strategy of low-cost carriers, they summarized that major LCCs that order aircraft in large numbers get large discounts for doing so, due to this they can sell their aircraft just a few years after delivery at a price high enough to keep their operating costs low.
Of course, the strategies of negotiating discounts for large orders and reselling planes are available to higher-cost carriers as well. Aircraft operate with a minimum set of optional equipment, further reducing costs of acquisition and maintenance, as well as keeping the weight of the aircraft lower and thus saving fuel. Ryanair seats do not have rear pockets, to reduce cleaning and maintenance costs. Others have no window shades. Pilot conveniences, such as ACARS, may be excluded. No in-flight entertainment systems are made available, though many US low-cost carriers do offer satellite television or radio in-flight, it is becoming a popular approach to install LCD monitors onto the aircraft and broadcast advertisements on them, coupled with the traditional route–altitude–speed information. Most do not offer reserved seating, hoping to encourage passengers to board early and thus decreasing turnaround times; some allow priority boarding for an extra fee instead of reserved seating, some allow reserving a seat in an emergency exit row at an extra cost.
Like the major carriers, many low-cost carriers develop one or more bases to maximize destination coverage and defend their market. Many do not operate traditional hubs, but rather focus cities. LCCs formed alliance themselves for example:U-FLY Alliance Airlines offer a simpler fare scheme, such as charging one-way tickets half that of round-trips. Fares increase as the plane fills up, which rewards early reservations. In Europe luggage is not transferred from one flight to another if both flights are with the same airline; this is thought to encourage passengers to take direct flights. Tickets are not sold with transfers, so the airline can avoid responsibility for passengers' connections in the event of a delay. Low-cost carriers have a sparse schedule with one flight per day and route, so it would be hard to find an alternative for a missed connection. Modern US-based low-cost carriers transfer baggage for continuing flights, as well as transferring baggage to other airlines. Many airlines opt to have passengers board via stairs, since jetways cost more to lease.
Low-cost carriers fly to smaller, less congested secondary airports and/or fly to airports during off-peak hours to avoid air traffic delays
Ryanair DAC is an Irish low-cost airline founded in 1984, headquartered in Swords, Ireland, with its primary operational bases at Dublin and London Stansted airports. It forms the largest part of the Ryanair Holdings family of airlines, has Ryanair UK, Ryanair Sun and Lauda as sister airlines. In 2016, Ryanair was the largest European budget airline by scheduled passengers flown, carried more international passengers than any other airline. Ryanair operates more than 400 Boeing 737-800 aircraft, with a single 737-700 used as a charter aircraft, but as a backup and for pilot training; the airline has been characterised by its rapid expansion, a result of the deregulation of the aviation industry in Europe in 1997 and the success of its low-cost business model. Ryanair's route network serves 37 countries in Europe, North Africa, the Middle East. Since its establishment in 1984, Ryanair has grown from a small airline, flying the short journey from Waterford to London Gatwick, into Europe's largest carrier.
Ryanair now has over 13,000 people working for the company. Most employees are contracted by multiple agencies to fly on Ryanair aircraft. Or, as is the case for pilots, the vast majority are either agency employed or self-employed, their services are contracted to Ryanair. After the growing airline went public in 1997, the money raised was used to expand the airline into a pan-European carrier. Revenues have risen from €231 million in 1998 to €1,843 million in 2003 and to €3,013 million in 2010. Net profits have increased from €48 million to €339 million over the same period. Ryanair was founded in 1984 as "Danren Enterprises" by Christopher Ryan, Liam Lonergan, Irish businessman Tony Ryan, founder of Guinness Peat Aviation; the airline was shortly thereafter renamed "Ryanair". It began operations in 1985 flying a 15-seat Embraer Bandeirante turboprop aircraft between Waterford and Gatwick Airport with the aim of breaking the duopoly on London-Ireland flights at that time held by British Airways and Aer Lingus.
In 1986, the company added a second route–flying Dublin to Luton, thus directly competing with the Aer Lingus/British Airways duopoly for the first time. Under partial EU deregulation, airlines could begin new international intra-EU services, as long as one of the two governments gave approval; the Irish government at the time refused its approval to protect Aer Lingus, but Britain–under Margaret Thatcher's deregulating Conservative government–approved the service. With two routes and two planes, the fledgling airline carried 82K passengers in one year. In 1986, the directors of Ryanair took an 85% stake in London European Airways. From 1987, this provided a connection with the Luton Ryanair service onward to Amsterdam and Brussels. In 1987, Ryan hired Michael O'Leary as his personal financial and tax advisor. In 1988, London European operated as Ryanair Europe and began to operate charter services. Ryanair passenger numbers continued to increase, but the airline ran at a loss and, by 1991, was in need of restructuring, including the closure of Ryanair Europe/London European.
O´Leary was charged with the task of making the airline profitable. O'Leary decided that the keys to profitability were low fares, quick turn-around times for aircraft, "no frills", no business class, operating a single model of aircraft. In 1989, a Short Sandringham was operated with Ryanair sponsorship titles but never flew revenue-generating services for the airline. O'Leary returned from a visit to U. S. Southwest Airlines convinced that Ryanair could make huge inroads into the European air market, at that time dominated by national carriers, which were subsidised to various degrees by their parent countries, he competed with the major airlines by providing a "no-frills", low-cost service. Flights were scheduled into regional airports, which offered lower landing and handling charges than larger established international airports. O'Leary as Chief Executive took part in a publicity stunt where he helped out with baggage handling on Ryanair flights at Dublin Airport. By 1995, after the consistent pursuit of its low-cost business model, Ryanair celebrated its 10th birthday by carrying 2.25 million passengers.
In 1992, the European Union's deregulation of the air industry in Europe gave carriers from one EU country the right to operate scheduled services between other EU states and represented a major opportunity for Ryanair. After a successful flotation on the Dublin Stock Exchange and the NASDAQ Stock exchanges, the airline launched services to Stockholm, Sandefjord Airport, Beauvais–Tillé and Charleroi near Brussels. In 1998, flush with new capital, the airline placed a massive US$2 billion order for 45 new Boeing 737-800 series aircraft; the airline launched its website in 2000, with online booking said to be a small and unimportant part of the software supporting the site. The online booking contributed to the aim of cutting flight prices by selling directly to passengers and excluding the costs imposed by travel agents. Within a year, the website was handling three-quarters of all bookings. Ryanair launched a new base of operation in Charleroi Airport in 2001; that year, the airline ordered 155 new 737-800 aircraft from Boeing at what was believed to be a substantial discount, to be delivered over eight years from 2002 to 2010.
100 of these aircraft had been delivered by the end of 2005, although there were slight delays in late 2005 caused by production disruptions arising from a Boeing machinists' strike. In April 2003, Ryanair acquired its ailing competitor Buzz from KLM. During 2004, Michael O'Leary warne