Ryanair has received another ticking off for advertising fares with a number of hidden charges.
Following a complaint from easyJet, the Advertising Standards Authority ruled that two newspaper adverts offering £10 one-way fares, but with small print detailing a number of restrictions and hidden charges, were “likely to mislead”.
The complaint concerned £10 one-way fares to Gothenburg and Dusseldorf. The small print said that the offer was subject to availability and excluded fees and charges.
easyJet challenged the availability of the fares and queried if they included taxes, charges and check-in fees or were misleading because the ad did not state the relevant travel dates.
Ryanair responded to the ASA by claiming that more than 10,000 seats were available to Gothenburg and more than 22,000 seats were on offer to Dusseldorf.
The airline said there was no requirement to include in adverts the specific travel dates for offers.
However the ASA ruled in its report that readers were likely to believe the £10 deal was a fixed price, rather than for specific dates.
The ASA said: “Because we considered that consumers would understand ‘£10 one way’ to mean that all flights to Gothenburg and Dusseldorf-Weeze were available at £10, and because we had not seen evidence to support that claim, we concluded that the ads were likely to mislead.”
Ryanair did not comment on the ruling, but instead attacked easyJet, claiming in a statement: “It’s funny that easyJet are such sticklers for detail when they refuse to publish their punctuality statistics.”
Ryanair and easyJet have clashed several times over claims made in adverts.
In 2008, the ASA referred Ryanair to the OFT for “persistent failure to abide by the Code of Advertising Practice”.
Ryanair retorted by complaining to the OFT about what it said were the ASA’s “bias and unfair procedures”.