Ryanair is introducing a number of key service improvements for passengers in bid to reduce airport and handling costs.
As of 16th March:
* all Ryanair’s fares will be reduced by 9% (£2.50 or €3.50),
* all passengers travelling with hand luggage and in possession of an EU passport will be able to check-in on the web at www.ryanair.com and by-pass all check-in and airport queues, as well as gaining priority boarding.
* Ryanair is increasing each passenger’s luggage allowance for bookings after 16th March, from the current 25kgs to 30kgs (comprising 10kgs carry-on and 20kgs checked-in luggage) which will substantially reduce excess baggage fees
* All passengers travelling with checked in luggage who book after 16th March will pay a fee of £2.50 (€3.50) per bag, per flight if booked in advance on the website, or £5.00 (€7.00) per bag, per flight if presented unbooked at the airport.
25% of Ryanair’s passengers who presently travel with just hand luggage will avoid check-in or boarding gate queues and will no longer cross subsidise those passengers travelling with checked in luggage.
A further 50% of Ryanair’s current traffic (who travel with just one checked in bag) will see no change in their cost of travel, as the £2.50 ticket price reduction will fund their £2.50 baggage fee if booked on the internet.
Lastly those passengers who presently travel with more than one checked in bag will see the cost of their travel rise by the £2.50 (€3.50) per bag for their second and subsequent bags.
This 9% “across the board” reduction in Ryanair’s ticket prices from 16th March will make these changes revenue neutral for Ryanair. The airline estimates that the reduction in ticket revenues and excess baggage fees will cost Ryanair more than £100m per annum. These lower fares will stimulate further traffic growth and increase the current (50%) price differential between Ryanair’s prices and the average ticket prices of competitors.
The airline hopes that as a result of these measures, and in particular the attraction of web check-in and priority boarding more of Ryanair’s customers will be incentivised to travel with hand luggage only and take advantage of Ryanair’s industry leading 10kgs of carry-on luggage.
Ryanair believes that its airport and handling costs will be reduced by over 10% as a result of web check-in uptake, which equate to a saving of some €30m. This saving would equate to 10% of Ryanair’s current year forecast after tax profits.
Ryanair has stated that it expects few reductions in staffing numbers, as existing numbers will be required to handle the airline’s “rapid growth”.
Michael O’Leary, Ryanair’s Chief Executive commented:“These changes will enable Ryanair to reduce our airport and handling costs across the network. We will require fewer and less expensive airport facilities such as airport check-in and baggage hall facilities. We will carry fewer bags making our aircraft lighter and improving our fuel consumption. Our existing check-in and baggage handling personnel will now be able to accommodate significantly greater traffic numbers as we aim to double the size of the airline over the coming five years.