Competition for Aer Lingus Regional services currently operated by Stobart Air routes is set to increase once the current contract expires in the next few years. According to the Irish Independent, both CityJet (WX, Dublin Int'l) and Air Nostrum's nascent Hibernian Airlines (HG, Dublin Int'l) unit are looking to submit bids.

According to the ch-aviation capacity module, Stobart Air currently operates services out of Dublin Int'l, Cork, and Shannon mostly to the United Kingdom under the Aer Lingus Regional franchise, using ATR72 equipment.

CityJet has recently announced it plans to grow its ACMI/charter business with new ex-SAS Scandinavian Airlines CRJ900ERs and could be interested in competing for some of the routes currently under the franchise agreement with Stobart Air. The carrier currently does not operate any turboprops.

For its part, Hibernian Airlines is a start-up wholly-owned by ILAI (Inversiones Líneas Aéreas Internacionales), the parent of Air Nostrum. It aims to secure an Irish Air Operator's Certificate (AOC) by the end of 2018. The carrier's fleet plans have not been presented in detail yet. Besides its ACMI operations, Air Nostrum operates under a Iberia Regional franchise agreement, in a model akin to the Aer Lingus Regional franchise. Both the Spanish flag carrier and Aer Lingus are subsidiaries of IAG International Airlines Group.

In addition, Stobart Air has been operating two Public Service Obligation (PSO) routes out Dublin to each of Donegal and Kerry with ATR72-600s since 2015 under a contract running through to January 31, 2022. Stobart Air's subsidiary, Aer Arann Islands (Connemara), additionally operates services connecting the Aran Islands to Connemara in western Ireland but will terminate these flights in December 2018.

In a separate development, Stobart Group, which owns Stobart Air, Carlisle, and London Southend airports besides a number of other infrastructure subsidiaries, has removed its former CEO and founder Andrew Tinkler from its board of directors, The Guardian has reported. The group accused Tinkler of breaching his contract and fiduciary duty to shareholders, and trying to destabilise the company by trying to oust the current Group Chairman Iain Ferguson and replace him with one of his associates.