Ryanair to whack extra charges on flights already booked

planeSick of the rain? Why not go to Spain! Millions of UK holidaymakers do just that, and many of those will have been very organised and already booked their flights, car hire and accommodation, so they have nothing to worry about. Well, nothing except an extra fee they will have to pay if they actually want to get on their aeroplane in Spain…

Ryanair, which is now, tragically, the leading airline flying between the UK and Spain, has sent emails to “millions” of passengers booked to fly from Spanish airports to warn them that they may have to pay a surcharge before they are allowed on board.

The message states “We may be forced* to debit passengers for any government imposed increases in airport charges prior to your travel date”, quoting its own rule that “if any such tax, fee or charge is introduced or increased after your reservation has been made you will be obliged to pay it (or any increase) prior to departure”.

At the moment, it is not certain that the airport charges will be increased, but it is practically certain that Ryanair will pass the costs on to travellers, even where they had paid in full months before departure. Richard Taylor of the Civil Aviation Authority told The Independent that it was a “commercial decision” for an airline as to whether it would pass a charge increase on retrospectively but that “they are legally within their rights to take money from customers who have already paid.” Of course they are. British Airways, which also flies from London to both Madrid and Barcelona, will not be back-charging customers.

Ryanair’s chief executive, Michael O’Leary, said “It’s a bit uncertain at the moment but it looks like the Spanish government are going to double the airport fees overnight the day the [Spanish] budget gets passed. We have already taken a number of millions of bookings for passengers intending to travel to these airports this summer and if they double the taxes we will be sending them a bill for the increase taxes or debiting their debit and credit cards”.

But it’s OK, you don’t have to pay the extra.Mr O’Leary graciously concedes that “you can of course reject that additional payment, cancel your flight and then not fly with us if you so wish.  But we’re not going to be funding the Spanish government’s taxes.” Bearing in mind this will apply to flights leaving Spain to return to the UK, this may not really be much of an option for most people.  Still, Mr O’Leary does have an interesting view of what the word optional means. Just look at Ryanair's list of optional extras, that include actually booking your flight, paying for it and oxygen. Good job we all love Ryanair so much eh?



  • Mike H.
    Shouldn't be so stingy and go Ryanair, chav.
  • Phuck Y.
    Not being pedantic or owt* but... Surely it's "Why not go to Spain?" It is a question, after all and not an instruction. I might want to give you a reason why I don't want to go to spain. *I am being pedantic.
  • bob
    It's AIRplane, not aero.
  • F. U.
    Ryanair are a bunch of cunts... but this is not news. We all know they are fucking cunts, yet millions of people give them their hard earned giro to fly to the middle of nowhere. If people stopped flying with them, then they wouldn't be one of the worlds biggest airlines. O'Leary is laughing all the way to the bank, crimping one off as he goes.
  • jax
    @Bob You are wrong. A*******.
  • The B.
    No, it's only airplane if you're a yank.
  • The B.
    Who the feck flies Ryanair anyway? Should we pity them or mock them?
  • IveHadTheSnip
    Anybody know what day the Spanish budget is due to be passed, i.e. when do we find out?
  • whatsit t.
    I thought the oxygen fee was a joke?!
  • Thefunboi
    I dont understand why this is an issue, BA/Virgin do the exact same thing day in, day out via their fuel surcharge, as the price of fuel fluctuates, so too does the fuel surcharge. To be fair to Ryanair, it is one thing they sing and dance about, that they will never charge fuelmsurcharges (which is surprising as i reckon thatncould be a nice earner for them) And to be fair to the skymarshall, why should he pay it? The money aint going in his pocket, he aint going back on the fare you were charged, hes just passing on a tax. If those booked (myself included with three flights to Spain post June) dont like it, dont fly. Not to piss O 'Leary off, but rather to make a point to the Spanish government. Hit them where it hurts if you feel that fucking strong about it. But i bet, like myself, in light of this current stretch of non stop fucking rain, Spain can increase the tax to £50 and I'll still fly!
  • The P.
    Flying? Really? How last century! Here at the Place we're so cool that we've had a teleporter installed in the hall so that future generations of cool people can come back in time and hang out in the coolest place in the Universe at any moment in history.
  • Nigel
    I got this email through. It's a bit of an arse but I expect no less from Ryanair. They do word their email as if to say they are going to take the money without asking.
  • XTC
    Don't worry Nigel, we've been talking to Ryanair and making plans for you.
  • Nigel
    @XTC Thanks ?
  • The P.
    I bet you think you are so funny "The Place". Where we offer love you offer bitterness. How many people have proposed at BitterWallet? We have hade nearly one hundred.
  • The P.
    Obviously by proposed I mean propositioned, and by propositioned I mean that money changed hands, either way people were happy, except for that incident with the Alsatian, that poor girl will never be able to look at lipstick in the same way again.

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