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Old 28th September 2017
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Is this the end for Ryanair?

I have refused to fly with Ryanair for at least ten years now owing to their handling of my cancelled flight.

Basically, they cancelled my return flight from Italy at very short notice, and told me to go online to rebook at no charge.

That was easier said than done, as a); Ryanair's cabin baggage policy meant I couldn't take my laptop with me, and b); when I did get to a computer I found that the next available return flight (for the fare that I had already paid) was in six weeks time!

I therefore had no option but to pay an inflated price for a second ticket, and to reclaim my original ticket, which they made as difficult as possible.

It seems Ryanair's policy of only rebooking passengers on flights of equal or lower value is what has really angered people. In my case it was a one-off, but they are now doing this on an industrial scale.

BBC Ryanair Report

Michael O'Leary has also angered the CAA and the Irish government, and has openly said that "he wasn't going to pay for passengers to fly on other airlines" (which I believe it against the law).

The official line is that disruption has been caused by a backlog of pilots' holiday, but reading between the lines it seems that Ryanair pilots are fed up with their working conditions and are voting with their feet.

Could this be the end of the world's least favourite airline I wonder?

I really cannot imagine anyone wanting to book with Ryanair right now if there is an alternative - any alternative. The cost of running an airline without passengers is immense, so funds could dry up very quickly indeed.

Unfortunately, we have allowed Ryanair to create a near monopoly, killing off smaller competitors and monopolising the most popular routes. How will those destinations survive now?

Is this yet another monster that we have created?
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Old 28th September 2017
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Re: Is this the end for Ryanair?

One can only hope...

Easyjet were equally customer unfriendly when they started out, but Ryanair seem to have picked up the batten and driven quality right down...

They simply don't care about the customer, it's all about the payments they get from the airports for guaranteeing a passenger flow...

I've flown with them a couple of time when there's been no alternate, but the experience is so bad I prefer to go to Luton rather than Stanstead and catch Easyjet wherever possible... although BA are far better and not that much more expensive...
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Old 28th September 2017
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Re: Is this the end for Ryanair?

You can piss off your customers if the fights are cheap enough, but once the core staff start leaving in droves it's game over.
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Re: Is this the end for Ryanair?

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Originally Posted by Walti View Post
One can only hope...

Easyjet were equally customer unfriendly when they started out, but Ryanair seem to have picked up the batten and driven quality right down...

We can only hope.
I personally resent being herded onto airplanes by bad tempered crew wielding electric cattle prods.

I have to say I have always found EasyJet more customer friendly than Ryanair. EasyJet have had some bad spells too, but nothing on this scale.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Walti View Post
BA are far better and not that much more expensive...
In many cases BA is quite a bit cheaper for a much better service, and you can check in a bag at no extra cost.

Sadly though BA were threatening to reduce seat pitching to compete with Ryanair, so hopefully that can be reversed.

The budget airlines may have made air travel more affordable, but they certainly haven't made it any more pleasurable.
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Old 28th September 2017
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Re: Is this the end for Ryanair?

I vowed never to fly RyanAir many years ago and thankfully I've managed to stick to it.

The way they treat both customers and staff is appalling. There used to be a site on the internet some years ago that was basically a RyanAir employee whinge site. Some of the posts there were real eye-openers:

- Staff having to buy their own uniforms

- Staff forced to do work-related activities outside of formal on-work time resulting in effective pay-rates less than minimum wage

- Staff banned from using on-plane coffee/tea-making facilities even when there was no time during turn-arounds to leave the plane and get something in the airport

- Applicants for pilots' jobs being asked to pay 100 just to have their CV considered

- Pressure to cut corners on safety issues in order to meet time pressures

... the list goes on.

I personally won't be unhappy to see them go west - but of course it'll be challenging for the staff in the short term.
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Re: Is this the end for Ryanair?

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Originally Posted by pdk42 View Post
I vowed never to fly RyanAir many years ago and thankfully I've managed to stick to it.

The way they treat both customers and staff is appalling. There used to be a site on the internet some years ago that was basically a RyanAir employee whinge site. Some of the posts there were real eye-openers:

- Staff having to buy their own uniforms

- Staff forced to do work-related activities outside of formal on-work time resulting in effective pay-rates less than minimum wage

- Staff banned from using on-plane coffee/tea-making facilities even when there was no time during turn-arounds to leave the plane and get something in the airport
None of this surprises me. Indeed, for me, Ryanair's practices embody much of what I despise about the 21st century.

I watched a television documentary about Ryanair a year or two ago now, and apart from complaints about time pressures, the aircrew were rationed to one plastic bottle of water each per day. Anything beyond that had to be bought with their own money.

No wonder so many of them are bad tempered.
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Re: Is this the end for Ryanair?

They also do an interesting trick on employing pilots. See this from http://www.thejournal.ie/ryanair-mob...36757-Feb2015/


Quote:
Some of Ryanair’s atypical contracts are known to be worked through Epsom-based company Brookfield Aviation International. The pilots set up small companies and then enter into a contract with Brookfield who then provide the pilot’s services to Ryanair.
This practice was found in the survey to “avoid responsibility for taxation or pay-related social insurance contributions” on behalf of pilots hired in this manner, according to a 2013 British court judgement in favour of a Belgian-based pilot who challenged his part of the arrangement.
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Re: Is this the end for Ryanair?

Spotted this too: https://www.irishtimes.com/news/cons...xVTJiY.twitter

Quote:
Today I clocked in at 5am and finished at 3pm, with a total of five hours in the air. Those five hours are all I will get paid for even though I was at work for 10 hours
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Old 28th September 2017
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Re: Is this the end for Ryanair?

You do wonder how they became so successful...

Have flown EasyJet a couple of times and have had no problem. Luckily avoided Ryanair...............
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Re: Is this the end for Ryanair?

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You do wonder how they became so successful...
I suspect Ryanair's success is because they have been frontrunners in that great 21st century disease; the race to the bottom.

Like Amazon, Sports Direct, Costa and many others, Ryanair's fortunes have been made by cutting costs to the bone, by exploiting and underpaying their own staff, by declaring profits in Liechtenstein or wherever, and by generally providing a pretty crap service.

Nobody seems interested in quality, longevity or innovation any more; it is all about how cheaply we can buy things for, and how quickly we can get them. Just look on any online store: their biggest selling point is not the quality of service that they offer, nor the knowledge of their staff; it is how late at night you can place an order for next day delivery.

I have to say this all makes me fear for the future. Engineers, innovators and entrepreneurs have always made a living by creating new products and services, and then selling them; traditionally through high street stores and suchlike. But thanks to the internet bricks and mortar outlets are now dead, and will only sell popular products which can be guaranteed to sell within n hours or days.

It has now become virtually impossible for smaller businesses to sell online without using Amazon or eBay. At one time their charges were reasonable, but like Ryanair, having now monopolised the market their charges have become crippling, and will no doubt increase even further as their share of the market increases.

How much real innovation do we see from these box shifters other than creating new ways to save themselves money?

Amazon are now selling food, which doesn't fill me with particular joy; especially I hear that their delivery drivers have to take toilet breaks in buckets in their own vans as their delivery schedules don't allow them time to stop.

Amazon's aim is clear; to put all other retailers out of business, but how will we pay for their products without jobs, and how will governments (not just ours) support the unemployed whilst Amazon only pays taxes in Liechtenstein?

In short, what sort of world are we creating by supporting these outfits?
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Old 28th September 2017
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Re: Is this the end for Ryanair?

@Naughty Nigel - JC makes a similar arguement about the UK economy under the Conservatives, post Brexit, ie race to the bottom, but I'm guessing (by previous discussions eg has TM shot herself...) you won't be supporting the extreme left wing Labour Party.

I have to ask you in relation to Amazon and eBay, do you boycott both of these? Personally I try to avoid eBay but I spend quite a bit with Amazon, mainly buying books.
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Old 29th September 2017
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Re: Is this the end for Ryanair?

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Originally Posted by Naughty Nigel View Post
............

Amazon are now selling food, which doesn't fill me with particular joy; especially I hear that their delivery drivers have to take toilet breaks in buckets in their own vans as their delivery schedules don't allow them time to stop.

Amazon's aim is clear; to put all other retailers out of business, but how will we pay for their products without jobs, and how will governments (not just ours) support the unemployed whilst Amazon only pays taxes in Liechtenstein?

In short, what sort of world are we creating by supporting these outfits?
Amazon are apparently setting up to sell food here (Australia) too. I won't be buying from them though. Occasionally my wife will buy some things from Aldi, but at least they're not an online retailer (at this point).
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Re: Is this the end for Ryanair?

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@Naughty Nigel - JC makes a similar arguement about the UK economy under the Conservatives, post Brexit, ie race to the bottom, but I'm guessing (by previous discussions eg has TM shot herself...) you won't be supporting the extreme left wing Labour Party.

I have to ask you in relation to Amazon and eBay, do you boycott both of these? Personally I try to avoid eBay but I spend quite a bit with Amazon, mainly buying books.
Yeah, books from Amazon (if I can't them elsewhere for the right price) & occasional items from ebay (again if local don't sell it, at a reasonable price).
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Old 29th September 2017
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Re: Is this the end for Ryanair?

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@Naughty Nigel - JC makes a similar arguement about the UK economy under the Conservatives, post Brexit, ie race to the bottom, but I'm guessing (by previous discussions eg has TM shot herself...) you won't be supporting the extreme left wing Labour Party.

I have to ask you in relation to Amazon and eBay, do you boycott both of these? Personally I try to avoid eBay but I spend quite a bit with Amazon, mainly buying books.
In answer to your direct question: I avoid Amazon wherever possible, with the possible exception of books and CD's, but only if I cannot find them anywhere else.

My experience of other items bought directly from Amazon is patchy at best, and includes a camping gas stove that gave off dangerously high levels of CO. Amazon clearly doesn't have any kind of quality programme to ensure the quality or safety of any of the goods that it sells, but will presumably withdraw products if it receives a sufficient number of returns.

Hardly satisfactory is it?

I think it is worth noting that whilst Amazon's prices often appear attractive, (although often not), the margins and fees that they expect dictate that the original product must have been very cheap in the first place.

With regard to eBay, I often use it to search for items of interest, but I will then do my utmost to track down trade sellers independently. Most are only too pleased to fulfil orders at lower cost outside of eBay, thereby avoiding eBay's and PayPal's extortionate fees. (Likewise items found on Amazon.)

However, eBay and Amazon listings are consistently ranked very high by internet search engines, which makes them difficult to avoid from a business selling perspective.

I have, with great reluctance, listed a small number of our more popular products on eBay over the past few weeks for an experimental period whilst we set up our own online ordering system. This decision was not taken lightly, and was made primarily because our box-shifter competitors have been there for some time, and are making some sales, although their margins must be negligible.

I have to say the whole process has been expensive and fraught with difficulties. In addition to their listing fees, eBay charges a 12% final value fee on the gross amount (including postage and VAT). This equates to more than 15% on the net amount, as VAT and postage are of course passed directly to HMRC and Royal Mail respectively. In addition, PayPal charges 3.4% plus 20 pence per item.

To make matters worse, PayPal holds on to your money for about a week after the sale has been made, and they grab it back and lock your account if a customer changes their mind and asks to return an item; even if well outside the statutory 14 day return period.

Given that resellers' margins are typically between 20 - 33% you will see that eBay and PayPal receives by far the lion's share. Amazon charges 15%, but such is the stranglehold that these corporations hold on the internet and online marketplace that they are becoming increasingly difficult to avoid.

eBay have recently announced new measures "to protect buyers from transactions outside of eBay." This includes prohibiting company logos, labels, phone numbers and any other means by which buyers can contact sellers directly. On the one hand they say they are increasing the quality of photographs so that buyers can see what they are buying, but they will automatically blur out any contact details. Any listings containing contact phone numbers will be deleted.

I will let you draw your own conclusions on this.

With regard to your references to JC; I didn't intend this to become a party political issue, and I don't really see that it is. Labour always says that it wants to protect the rights of workers, but let's be clear; Labour is only really interested in the public sector and those who belong to powerful trades unions. Shop workers, for example, have long had a very poor deal in my view, but they have no political clout and so are easily exploited. This can now be extended to the vast numbers of low paid warehouse staff and delivery drivers on zero-hours contracts who spend their lives distributing cheap tat from China.

Indeed, almost everything that we are discussing here started during or before the Blair years, and Blair did noting to stop any of it, so I don't see that party politics has a lot to do with it.

If we think the unthinkable a future Corbyn government might well try to outlaw zero hours contracts, but it would be far more difficult to kerb the power of the big American online sellers that we are discussing, or indeed, ruthless airline bosses based in Ireland. However, based on recent events it seems that some of them are perfectly capable of engineering their own downfalls. 'Bring it on' is all that I can say.
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Old 29th September 2017
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Re: Is this the end for Ryanair?

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If we think the unthinkable a future Corbyn government
It is unthinkable. There's no way that Rupert Murdoch, the Barkley Brothers or Paul Dacre would allow a Corbyn government!

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