Ryanair flights

Based in Dublin Ireland, Ryanair is Europe's largest and most controversial low cost carrier.

Ryanair flight

Flight routes

2013

Ryanair plans to open new bases in Marrakech and Fez in Morocco in 2013, and also fly to Rabat and Essaouira. Two planes will be based at Marrakech, from which 22 routes will be flown, and one plane will be based at Fez, from which 15 routes will be flown. Flights from Rabat will be to Paris, Marseille and Brussels; whilst flight sfrom Essaouira will be to Marseille and Brussels.

Summer 2013

Two new routes from Prestwick; to Rzeszow & Warsaw. Six new routes from Edinburgh; to Beziers, Bologna, Cagliari, Corfu, Katowice & Santander.

31 Mar 2013

Flights commence from London Stansted to Nuremberg (south-east Germany).

23 Feb 2013

Ryanair says that it will be cutting its flights to Spain by 12%, in protest against an increased airport departure tax. The biggest cuts are for flights to Madrid, Seville, Barcelona & Valladolid.

10 Jan 2013

In retaliation for the increase in airport charges, Ryanair cuts 10 routes from Budapest and drops flight frequencies on 9 of the remaining 20. CEO, Michael O'Leary, says that “Ryanair regrets Hochtief Budapest Airport’s decision to increase charges, impose inefficient facilities and reject our proposals for a competitive growth offer which would have allowed Ryanair to grow traffic and routes at Budapest. Hochtief cannot continue to ignore the competitive marketplace, where airports all over Europe have been reducing costs and offering efficient facilities in return for traffic growth.” Flight routes being cut are:

  • Budapest - Baden

  • Budapest - Birmingham

  • Budapest - Bologna

  • Budapest - Düsseldorf

  • Budapest - Krakow

  • Budapest - Lübeck

  • Budapest - Malaga

  • Budapest - Munich Birmingham

  • Budapest - Oslo

  • Budapest - Thessaloniki  

2 Nov 2012

Ryanair announces new routes flying from Manchester to Corfu, Krakow, Lanzarote, Paphos & Trapani. And from Liverpool to Lublin and Zadar.

12 Jul 2011

To compete with Jet2.com and easyJet flights from Manchester, Ryanair has announced it'll be opening a base at Manchester Airport.

21 Feb 2011

Ryanair announces that in May 2011 it will start flying from Vilnius (Lithuania) to Barcelona, Dublin, London and Rome.

Mar 2009

A base is planned to be opened at Forli Airport, becoming Ryanair's 4th base in Italy.

14 Dec 2008

Flights between Bristol and Rzeszow will cease.

4 Nov 2008

Ryanair plans to stop flying between Bristol and Budapest.

27 Oct 2008

Seven routes are transferred from Forli to Bologna Airport:

  • Barcelona - Bologna flights

  • Birmingham - Bologna flights

  • Brussels - Bologna flights

  • Dublin - Bologna flights

  • Frankfurt - Bologna flights

  • Stansted - Bologna flights

  • Valencia - Bologna flights

27 Oct 2008

Ryanair starts new Ireland West Knock to Liverpool route.

26 Oct 2008

Ryanair starts a new Birmingham to Prague route.

Oct 2008

Ryanair plans to start twice-weekly flights from London Stansted to Agadir, Morocco.

Oct 2008

Ryanair adds 6 new flight-routes from Madrid (Spain). The Ryanair flights link Madrid with Liverpool in England, Santander and Gerona in Spain, Cagliari and Alghero on the Italian island of Sardinia and Frankfurt-Hahn airport in Germany.

In-flight events

31 Dec 2012

A young boy on a flight to Dusseldorf starts having convulsions when a nurse from Malaga (Virginia Valle) assists by bringing his temperature down with a paracetamol suppository, and instructs his parents to hold his tongue so that the boy wouldn't choke on it.

Luggage on Ryanair flights

A per item fee for checked-in luggage is charged on Ryanair flights.

12 December 2012. A group of ill children on a Ryanair flight from Dublin to Paris (to visit Disneyland courtesy of the Share a Dream Foundation) are forced to repack their luggage (which included their medicine) after it exceeded weight limits. A person who was 6kg over the 15kg weight limit was helped out by another person who was underweight.

Flight incidents

7 Dec 2012

Ryanair flight FR8414 from Paris to Budapest is instructed to abort its approach because of a fire in tower. The crew were advised to divert to Bratislava or take a visual approach to Budapest, and opted to landin in Budapest. the plane landed safely.

21 May 2011

A Ryanair flight is forced to abort take-off from Dublin Airport at over 200km/h after a Monarch Airlines plane enters the same runway.

25 Aug 2008

airbags deploy on Ryanair flight FR9336Ryanair flight FR9336 from Bristol to Barcelona loses air pressure and conducts an emergency landing at Limoges International Airport. Some passenger suffer from earache as a result of the rapid descent, but nobody is seriously injured. The plane was a Boeing 737-800, 5-years old, and had been serviced a month before the flight.

 

Litigation

Ryanair's litigation creates a lot of publicity for the airline.

3 Dec 2012

A report from Aviation Herald on a Ryanair Manchester to Memmingen flight, where an incident occurred in which the aircraft had to have a 2nd attempt at landing. Ryanair demanded apologies and the removal fof the story, then threatened legal action if certain reader comments weren't deleted: "We have identified a number of comments posted under this article on your website which are defamatory and, as a result of their continued presence thereupon, (the airline's name) outstanding ... safety record has been damaged in the eyes of right-thinking members of society...These comments (and others such as these) are deeply damaging to (the airline's name) good name and reputation for safety and may have damaging consequences for bookings. As you will be aware, you are responsible for the content on your website and are liable as a publisher for defamatory statements which you fail to remove after being put on notice. Therefore we hereby notify you that any failure to immediately remove these comments (and others such as these) will result in the immediate issue of legal proceedings for defamation against you ..."

28 Jan 2008

French President Nicolas Sarkozy and Carla Bruni file a lawsuit against Ryanair, after the Le Parisien newspaper published their photo with a bubble coming out of Carla Bruni's mouth saying in French, "With Ryanair, my whole family can come to my wedding" (at this stage it was not public knowledge that the couple would marry on the 2nd February 2008).

Ryanair's Sarkozy and Bruni advert

5 Feb 2008

Nicolas Sarkozy (French president) Carla Bruni (France's first lady) win a court case against Ryanair for using a photograph of them in a Ryanair advert without their consent. French Judge Louis-Marie Raingeard awards Bruni 60 000 euros and Sarkozy a symbolic 1 euro.

How Ryanair charges low fees

The headline prices of Ryanair flights are kept at low levels through a combination of very low costs and making money out of passengers outside of headline flight prices.

30 Nov 2012. After being told in July 2012 by the Office of Fair Trading that it couldn't charge a fee to debit order clients, Ryanair scraps its 6 debit card fee; only to introduce an across the board 6 website administration fee and a 2% credit card charge. "In addition, Ryanair’s 6/6 admin fee (which covers costs associated with Ryanair’s website, www.ryanair.com) will apply to all new bookings made from 30 November, except those bookings made using a Ryanair Cash Passport in Ireland, Germany and Spain, where admin fees can be avoided until 1 February, 15 February and 21 March 2013, respectively."

Cost-cutting measures

Sick bags are only handed out on demand. No window blinds on planes. Seats on planes do not recline. No velcro-anchored headrest covers. No pocket seats (where passengers normally find a free magazine.

Marketing expenses are kept down by creating hype through controversy, rudeness, taunting other airlines (see list of Ryanair quotes) and court cases:

Complaints are minimised by insisting that they be in writing, and by never giving refunds. O'Leary himself has said that he would have no qualms in telling somebody who wanted a refund on a Ryanair ticket to "f$%^ off".

Additional revenue sources

Outside of charging the headline flight prices, Ryanair have a number of ways of making money out of passengers. A range of products are sold on board the flight, with beverages being sold for high prices to the captive market. There is a surcharge for use of a wheelchair. There is a "Priority" charge for passengers who want to jump the queue to get on the plane earlier (which are only worthwhile if departure airport ground staff are in a working mood).

Cabin Crew Charity Calendars

2014

Ryanair plans on bringing out a male calendar

16 Oct 2012

The Ryanair 2012 cabin crew calendar is out. It's somewhat controversial because of the racy nature of the photos.

Oct 2011

Oct 2010

Oct 2009

Oct 2008

Humour

18 Oct 2012. Newsbiscuit on Ryanair's new priority exit bomb doors: "Cost-cutting airline Ryanair is set to introduce a new ‘priority exit’ service on their flights via a set of bomb doors. For a 10 fee, passengers will soon be able to elect to leave the plane up to an hour before regular passengers by utilising a ‘sudden loss of floor’ system.

‘Some people are in a hurry and don’t want the hassle of queuing to get off the plane, or all the formalities of baggage collection and landing to slow things down,’ said Ryanair chairman Michael O’Leary, who is confident the new service will prove a hit with customers who survive.

Consumer watchdogs have attacked the charges however, with a spokesman claiming: ‘Although 10 sounds reasonable, the small print states that a parachute is 250 extra, and I hardly feel a parachute should be classed as an extra.’"

Check-in for Ryanair flights

To check-in for a Ryanair flight at the airport costs extra (web check-in is free and has the added advantage of allowing one to skip the queues and overcrowding at the airport). You have to have an EU or UK passport to check in online.

Booking Ryanair flights

website bookings

www.ryanair.com

telephonic bookings

Austria

0900 210 240

Belgium Dutch

0902 88 009

Belgium French

0902 88 007

Czech Republic

+353 1 249 7745

Finland

0600 160 10

France

0892 232 375

Germany

0900 116 0500

Hungary

+353 1 249 7748

Ireland

0818 30 30 30

Italy

899 67 89 10

Latvia

+353 1 249 7743

Lithuania

+353 1 249 7748

Netherlands

0900 20 22 184

Norway

820 00 720

Poland

0300 303 033

Portugal

+353 1 249 7791

Slovakia

+353 1 249 7746

Spain

807 220 032

Sweden

0900 2020240

Switzerland

0900 808 001

UK

0871 246 0000

Rest of World

+353 1 249 7791

Ryanair

Ryanair bases in Europe

Ryanair has 28 bases in Europe (Alicante, Belfast, Birmingham, Bournemouth, Bremen, Bristol, Brussels, Cork, Derry, Dublin, Dusseldorf, Edinburgh, Frankfurt, Girona, Glasgow, Liverpool, Luton, Madrid, Marseille, Milan, Nottingham, Pisa, Reus, Rome, Shannon, Stansted, Stockholm & Velencia):

Ryanair bases in Europe

History of Ryanair flights

In May 1985 Ryanair became Ireland's second airliner (Aer Lingus was the other airline), co-founded by Tony Ryan (an Irish tycoon), Christy Ryan (not a relation of Tony Ryan, although he was Godfather of Tony Ryan's son Declan) and Liam Lonergan (Catlan, Declan and Shane Ryan were the funding shareholders with £1 million from their father, Tony Ryan). The original plan had been to name the airline Irelandia, but by May 1985 they decided on Ryanair after Christy Ryan, whose idea it was to start flights between Waterford and London (he was from Waterford). The Ryanair team, headed by Eugene O'Neill, first operated from a small prefabricated building at Waterford airport.

First Ryanair flights

Ryanair initially had a licence to operate flights from Waterford (in the South-East of Ireland) to London Gatwick and back, and in July 1985 the inaugural flight was flown; beginning a daily return flight service. The first Ryanair flights from Waterford to London Gatwick and back were in a 15-seat propellor-driven Bandeirante plane (leased by Guinness Peat Aviation - GPA - a company owned by Tony Ryan). Within a few weeks they were managing to fill up half the seats on the plane, encouraging them to double business to two return flights a day from Waterford to London Gatwick.

Dublin airportRyanair flights from Dublin to London

While Ryanair's aim with the Waterford to London flights was to prove to the Irish government that they could run a route efficiently and safely, their sights were set on competing on the lucrative London to Dublin flight route. In December 1985 they received a licence to operate Ryanair flights from Dublin to Luton airport. Crucially, although only an hour's travel from London, Luton airport was not classified as a London airport; meaning that Ryanair could undercut the airfares of Aer Lingus's flights from Dublin to London (in 1985 there were minimum airfares which had to be charged on flights from Dublin to London). Tony Ryan described the awarding of the flight licence as being "the most exciting route opportunity ever to be given to any independent airline operating (flights) into or out of Ireland". After being delayed for 42 minutes, at 0842am first Ryanair flight from Dublin to London Luton (FR201) took to the air on the 31st May 1986. The flight was in an old Viscount which could carry 43 passengers.

New Ryanair flight routes opened in 1987

In 1987 the following Ryanair flight routes were opened up:

Purchase of London European Airways

As a result of a misguided attempt to protect Aer Lingus, the Irish government refused to grant Ryanair a licence to fly from Ireland to continental Europe. Tony Ryan therefore purchased 85% of London European Airways (LEA), a London Luton based airline, in December 1986. In January 1988 LEA was relaunched as Ryanair Europe, allowing Ryanair to sell flights from Dublin to Brussels using London Luton as a hub. At the start of 1989 it was clear that the Ryanair Europe experiment wasn't working and it was closed (one of the first steps taken by the incoming chief executive, P.J. McGoldrick).

1988 expansion of Ryanair flight routes

On 1 March 1988 Ryanair launched flights from Manchester to Dublin and back, later in March 1988 flights between Galway and London Luton were launched and then in April flights from London Luton to Shannon were launched. Later in April flights from Glasgow to Dublin and back were launched. And then in May 1988, flights between Liverpool and Dublin were launched. However, the competition from Aer Lingus was fierce and unrelenting - and by October 1988 both the Manchester-Dublin and Glasgow-Dublin Ryanair flight routes were history. With the airline's accounts in a mess and losses obscured from view, Eugene O'Neill was acrimoniously dismissed in early 1989. Declan Ryan was appointed interim chief executive until Tony Ryan appointed P.J. McGoldrick as chief executive in October 1988.

McGoldrick restructures Ryanair

After closing down the scheduled flights of Ryanair Europe, McGoldrick restructured Ryanair into 5 parts:

  1. Ryanair based in Dublin

  2. Ryanair Europe (the charter services), based at London Luton airport

  3. Ryanair Engineering, based at London Luton airport

  4. Ryanair Fleet Management

  5. Ryanair Tours and Leisure

The emergence of Michael O'Leary

In May 1988 Michael O'Leary walked into Ryanair's Central Dublin offices for the first time; having been sent in by Tony Ryan to stop the losses the airline was making (£4m loss in 1985, £6m loss in 1986, £7m loss in 1987). Within a month O'Leary reporeted that Ryanair could not be saved and recommended it be closed down, but Tony Ryan would have none of it. Michael O'Leary did not immediately start running Ryanair; his brief was to look after Tony Ryan's assets, the largest of which was Ryanair (although the company was nominally in Tony Ryan's children's names). O'Leary watched as P.J. McGoldrick took over from Eugene O'Neil.

1989 expansion of Ryanair flight routes

Under the leadership of McGoldrick the strategy was to step away from head to head competition with Aer Lingus. After closing down Ryanair flights from Glasgow to Dublin and Manchester to Dublin in 1988, McGoldrick opened up flight routes from Kerry airport to London Luton, as well as from Knock (in the west of Ireland) to Leeds/Bradford and to London's Stansted airport. In May 1989, McGoldrick announced the very significant opening of a Ryanair flight route from Dublin to London Stansted airport (in Essex). Aer Lingus very quickly followed with opening its own flights from Dublin to London Stansted.

Ireland changes to a two-airline policy

By the end of 1989 Ryanair was on the brink of collapse, and Tony Ryan informed the Irish government that he would only put more money into the airline if he got government protection from Aer Lingus's predatory tactics. Ryanair successfully lobbied the Irish government to change to a two airline policy, by dividing up Britain's airports between Aer Lingus and Ryanair. In particular, the Irish government decided that London's Heathrow and Gatwick airports would be the sole domain of Aer Lingus, and London's Luton and Stansted airports would be only for Ryanair flights.

McGoldrick resigns

At the end of a 1991, a year in which Ryanair recorded its first profit ever (£293,000), P.J. McGoldrick resigned as chief executive. By this stage Michael O'Leary had been appointed Chief Financial Officer, and Tony Ryan appointed Paddy Murphy as chief executive. Murphy lasted six weeks and in December 1991 Conor Hayes was appointed chief executive of Ryanair. Michael O'Leary wanted out, but agreed with Tony Ryan to stay on in return for himself getting 25% of any profit Ryanair made above £2m (which shows that Tony Ryan had little concept of how profitable Ryanair could become).

Hayes hands over the baton to Michael O'Leary

On the 23rd June 1993 Conor Hayes formally handed in his resignation as chief executive of Ryanair, but stayed in office until the end of the year. On 1 January 1994 Michael O'Leary officially took over as chief executive of Ryanair.

1 Nov 2012

Ryanair asks Spanish police to remove a passenger from their plane, allegedly because she had the wrong luggage size. According to Ryanair: "This passenger was in breach of airport security regulations, and having become disruptive was properly removed from the aircraft at the request of Ryanair agents."

17 Oct 2012

Ryanair comes last in the 2012 Global Brand Simplicity Index (Google came first). "This year, ultra-low cost European airline Ryanair, lands at the very bottom of the Simplicity Index. Despite a 25% increase in profits and 5% increase in traffic in 2012, Ryanair continues to experience turbulence from customers who are disgruntled about hidden costs, bad service, a cluttered website and "a deliberately poor pricing policy.""

15 Oct 2012

Foreign Exchange Services is launched in partnership with Moneycorp. "Ryanair already delivers Europe's lowest fares, as well as the guaranteed lowest hotel room rates (on RyanairHotels.com) and now passengers can continue to save by buying foreign currency on the Ryanair.com website. Ryanair is delighted to partner with Moneycorp to ensure our UK passengers can bag yet another bargain and make huge savings on their foreign exchange transactions." said Stephen McNamara of Ryanair.

10 Oct 2012

Ryanair drops its bid to purchase London's Stansted Airport. “While we fully accept that Ferrovial is entirely free not to sell to Ryanair, we fail to understand how it can comply with competition law if Stansted’s biggest customer, accounting for 70% of the traffic, is excluded from this sale process. Ryanair will continue to explore the rapid traffic growth opportunities it believes are available at Stansted, if and when the new owner of Stansted reverses the doubling [of charges].” said Stephen McNamara.

Dec 2009

Ryanair plans on having 40 planes able to handle Blackberrys and cellphone calls.

Mar 2009

Ryanair plans on having increased the number of planes able to handle in-flight mobile phone calls from 15 in July 2008 to 50.

Sep 2008

Ryanair are looking to introduce mobile phone calls on 10 of its Dublin-based Boeing 737s by end August, as they await regulatory approval. The boxes being built into the planes will be able to handle up to 6 simultaneous mobile phone calls and unlimited text messages.

11 Aug 2008

Ryanair threatens to start taking action against website "screen scraping", the practise whereby other websites take details of Ryanair's website and make a mirror copy elsewhere, in the process completing a Ryanair booking without the passenger ever visiting the Ryanair site. From the 11th August 2008 Ryanair planned to start cancelling "screen scraping" flight reservations. This contrasts with Flybe (a low cost carrier), which allows external parties access to its flight reservations system.

27 Jul 2008

Italian minister giving middle fingerThe Italian government is furious with Ryanair, after it publicised a photo of one of its politicians giving the middle finger, with the ad's text suggesting the gesture is at Italian passengers (for supporting Alitalia).

22 Jul 2008

Celebrating with free tea and coffee, Ryanair operates its first flight from Kerry to Dublin , with a Boeing 737-800 leaving Kerry at 0625 and arriving in Dublin at 0705.

11 Jul 2008

Ryanair wins an injunction from the Hamburg Regional Court in Germany against Vtours GmBH, to stop them from scraping flights and timetables from Ryanair's website and presenting them for sale to their customers.

9 Jul 2008

Ryanair exercises options to have 3 Boeing 737-800 aircraft delivered in June 2010.

6 Jun 2008

Ryanair signs a 5 year agreement with Britvic International to supply cooldrinks (e.g. juices, 7-Up, J20 and Pepsi) aboard its flights.

5 May 2008

Cost of checking in a bag increases to 8 pounds, and cost of using a check-in desk increases to 4 pounds.

29 Apr 2008

A Ryanair plane, flight FR1624 from Lodz to East Midlands, runs off the runway at Lodz Airport in Poland.

14 Apr 2008

Bridget Dowling is appointed sales and marketing manager for the UK and Ireland.

14 Feb 2008

As a Valentine's day gesture, Ryanair gives away free airline tickets (excluding taxes and charges of course) to the 50 best kissing couples on Leicester Square in London.

22 Feb 2008

Ryanair shuts down its website for 3 days (from from 22:00 on February 22 to 23:59 on February 25) whilst it moves to a new flight reservation system (telephone customers will also not be able to book flights whilst the site is down)

26 Feb 2008

With the opening of Ryanair's new website, it has undertaken to include airport taxes in its advertised prices.

Oct 2008

Ryanair planned date for opening a base in Reus, Barcelona.

Ryanair landing

Here's a video of a Ryanair plane landing at EDDN:

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