'Bear with us' pleads Ryanair as passengers vent frustration at cancellations

Jon Howard
September 21, 2017

"We have taken on extra customer service teams to speed up the rate at which we accommodate and action alternative flight requests or refund applications", states Ryanair's chief marketing officer Kenny Jacobs.

The Irish airline, Europe's largest by passenger numbers, has been widely criticised by politicians and consumer groups since announcing on Friday plans to cancel between 40 and 50 flights per day in the weeks to October 31.

Italy's antitrust watchdog said on Wednesday it had opened a probe into thousands of flight cancellations by Ryanair, which it said the low-priced airline could have prevented.

Ryanair has canceled several flights because they screwed up the schedule of their pilots' holidays.

It is estimated that around 350,000 passengers could be directly affected by cancellations, though many may not realise flights are cancelled until shortly before their departure date.

Over 200 canceled flights are either going to or from London Stansted, including some connected to Edinburgh, Manchester, and Birmingham.

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Laure Savoy wrote: "How can I ask for the EU261 compensation and refund if on your website the cancelled fight number is unknown for you?".

The Employee Representative Committees in 17 of Ryanair's 85 bases, including eight in Germany, have rejected the offer of a bonus for working extra days in a joint letter to management, the source said.

Ryanair this evening published details of the majority of the cancelled flights. It is legally required to spell out compensation rules when a flight is cancelled and, in our view, have so far failed to do that, leaving passengers hunting around for information.

Ryanair Chief Executive Michael O'Leary said last week his firm was finalizing a bid to buy Alitalia. Infamous for his often controversial and fiery public image, O'Leary seemed unconcerned by the effect this mishap might have on the future of Ryanair, adding, "Our booking engine is full of passengers who have sworn they will never fly with us again".

In a statement, the airline said cancellation notices had been emailed to customers up to and including Wednesday 20 September.

By the end of today, Wednesday, they expect to have reassigned 55 per cent of customers affected to other Ryanair flights which amounts to over 175,000 passengers.

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