Airlines overcharging for drinks and snacks aboard? You don't say...
In one of the least shocking research findings ever, flight comparison engine Kayak has discovered that low cost airlines are among the worst offenders for hiking up the price of snacks and drinks by more than 20 times the actual cost.
A comparison of six major budget airlines found huge price increases on basic refreshments, with most carriers charging around £2.60 for a tea and £1.80 for a 500ml bottle of water. As a huge surprise to no-one, Ryanair was found to be the most expensive when it came to on-board snacks, charging £2.34 for a bottle of water and £1.56 for a chocolate bar, as well as paying £1.96 for a 200ml can of cola, and £2.34 for a 160g bag of gummy sweets. compared with everyday prices, according to research that.
But it’s not just Ryanair. The investigation found that ‘bucket’ airlines routinely charge triple the supermarket price for chocolate bars, and a cup-a-soup sachet that could be obtained for as little as 12p from a supermarket could cost passengers as much as £2.50. And alcoholic drinks were also extra-pricey. On Jet2 flights, a 330ml can of continental lager costs £4.20, while a 440ml can in a supermarket can cost less than a pound; a mark up of more than 500%.
Frank Brehany, consumer director of HolidayTravelWatch said: “Airlines will argue it’s market forces – you have a choice to buy, or not. But it’s not like this. An airport is a sealed environment and airlines have a captive market. Once you’re through security you’re basically held hostage.”
In a disgruntled statement Easyjet said: “We believe that our products offer value for money when compared to similar outlets and in particular when compared to airport cafes. For example, we charge £1.80 for a 330ml soft drink which is served to our customers in their seat with a glass and ice. This is comparable to a coffee shop, bar or restaurant and should not be compared to a supermarket.”
Ryanair said: “Customers are free to buy our on-board snacks or bring their own if they so wish. Either way, everybody saves time and money flying with Ryanair.”
The six airlines investigated were Ryanair, Easyjet, Jet2, FlyBe, Monarch and Thomas Cook.