Why is it impossible to not hate Ryanair?

When I went to Norway this year for Christmas I had the most convenient travel route ever. I had a direct flight from Stanstead Airport to Rygge in Norway. Rygge is a tiny airport, but when you visit people on the southeast side of Oslo like I did, its perfect.

The ticket was also quite reasonably priced even though it was the Christmas holiday.

Yet, despite offering me this ideally set up trip between the two airports on both side which fits me the best, I struggle to dig up any kind of positive feelings for Ryanair.

Was discussing it a bit with Wim and Tim and I think a big part of the reason for this is the constant feeling you get when booking a trip with them that they are trying to make you think their fares are cheaper than they actually are or the feeling that they attempt to ‘sneak’ in extra options.

For instance how they charge you for the use of your credit/debit card, a fee that got nothing to do with the actual cost to them and the fact that it is practically impossible to avoid it. As Tim mentioned when we discussed it, if they just included that 5£ fee in the price you wouldn’t think about it and just be happy you got a cheap ticket, instead you feel they are trying to pull a fast one on you and make their prices look even better than they are by pretending mandatory expenses aren’t mandatory.

Maybe Ryanair doesn’t care if I or anyone else actually likes them, I mean I still booked my flight to Norway with them because they where the only ones flying from Stanstead. Yet on the other side I always tend to fly with Easyjet instead of Ryanair if I can, both due to usually flying to better airports and a general feeling that if I search for a flight the price they list for that flight is the price I am actually paying.

Maybe the problem is simply that Ryanair doesn’t understand that even when you are travelling I don’t like the feeling of being taken for a ride :)

18 thoughts on “Why is it impossible to not hate Ryanair?

  1. I sometimes feel like discount airlines like Ryanair, EasyJet, etc act sneaky and cheap just to keep the identity of the brand. If they weren’t acting that way we’d be even more suspicious of the fact that their prices are less then half of “regular” airline prices.

  2. It is actually more expensive for them if you pay by credit card – they have to pay fees, so in fact they get less than what you pay. 5£ seems a bit too much but still.

    I am also not a big fan of them but I think they are an important factor in the market and they help bring the price of long-distance travel down. Effectively, everybody can now fly somewhere with Ryanair – it may be a bit less confortable than for somebody who has less money. But air travel is no longer out of reach for a huge part of the population. IMO this is a good thing.

    • @Leon: More expensive than what? My point is that you have no other real option than to pay with your visa or mastercard. It is not like you can pay cash at the airport or something. And their fudge about pointing to that weird cashcard that 0.01% of the population got then they should list paying with that as a rebate and make the visa/mastercard fee part of the standard price. As it is they say the price is X, but we also have a payment fee of X which for all practical reasons you can not avoid. Which to me is just a sleight of hand instead of listing their ‘real’ price, right away.

  3. I could not agree more, I really loath Ryan Air. it’s not just the fact that their advertised prices never match up to the reality, but also I find their staff to be discourteous (to put it mildly) and in general they treat you as if you are imposing on them, rather than paying for a service, their luggage allowances make no sense (there is never space on their planes for the 10kg hand luggage they allow, and 15kg hold is pathetic), the rows of seats on their planes are lot closer together than on any other airline I know of, and their planes seem to be never cleaned. They make EasyJet look like a luxury airline, and I only fly with them when there are no other options at all.

  4. Don’t forget the horrible yellowish colors of their planes. My mind constantly screams “GET OUT” when I’m in one of their planes. If feeling like a cattletransport is their goal, than they’re getting pretty good at it!

  5. Couldn’t agree more. I actually used to like them 3 or 4 years back, but after flying some more with them I got to really hate them. In my experience EasyJet or Wizzair is much better, and whenever I have the choice within the same price range, I tend to avoid Ryanair.

  6. @uraeus: It would surprise me if they really make it impossible to buy using cash. Especially given that the countries where Ryanair operates are countries where the cash currency is legal tender. This means that they are legally required to accept payments in cash. Meaning, you can sue them if they don’t accept cash and you’ll win the lawsuit because it simply is law.


    “Legal tender or forced tender is an offered payment that, by law, cannot be refused in settlement of a debt, and have the debt remain in force.[1] Currency is the most common form of legal tender.”

  7. You forgot to mention (in no specific order):
    * staff you can barely understand when doing the ‘safety’ announcements when they’re native english speakers and you are too. Imagine the comedy for non-native english speakers. Oh, and of course don’t even think they’ll do any announcements in either the departure or arrival language.
    * advertising everywhere in the plane
    * advertising everywhere in the plane
    * and if you think you’d be able to rest, they’ll wake you up with (on the PA at full blast) “AND DON’T FORGET TO BUY OUR SCRATCHCARDS BLAH BLAH BLAH BUY BUY BUY BLAH BLAH” every 15mins or so.
    * advertising airports with the nearest MAJOR city (like Paris or Barcelona) instead of the actual city they fly to (Beauvais or Girona)
    * advertising it’s the cheapest way to get from Paris to Barcelona… whereas if you start piling up all the added expenses… you could actually fly with EasyJet or Vueling (way better than other low costs btw) for the same price … and avoid the 4-5 extra hours added to your trip because you have to take coaches to/from the advertised cities to the airport (one hour minimum each way).

    So yes… RyanAir is the CRAPPIEST airline to pick… *EVEN* if it actually goes to the closest airport to your final destination. The pain is just *NOT* worth it.

    P.S. Some french speakers actually nickname RyanAir as “Betaillere” (cattle carrier), hope that makes it clear enough :)

    P.P.S. I unfortunately had to fly with them many times when I was on (very) low budget… until I realized I could spend the same amount for Vueling or other low-cost companies. So the excuse of “but they allow everybody to take the plane” is 100% horse manure at this point.

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  9. I agree with Edward, if you calculate the *total* cost Ryanair is almost never the cheapest airline. Barcelona is a great example, the airport is really in Girona and that’s a whopping 94 kilometres from Barcelona. A single ride takes about 90 minutes and costs an additional 6,50 €.

  10. Picture this: I was standing in a 2 hour queue to check-in my luggage at Stansted – they had 3 check-in staff for every single person flying Ryanair, which at Stansted means a queue of thousands.

    One guy decided to complain to a Ryanair official who then asked to see his boarding pass. He obviously thought she was going to help him out but instead she proceeded to tear it up, everybody stood there open jawed.

    They draw you in with their sneaky pricing structure and then they turn nasty. The moral of this story is: NEVER FLY RYANAIR!

  11. Leon:

    last time I used Ryanair (last year) they were not charging £5 pounds credit/debit card fee, but £5 per person per way, so if you book a return ticket for two, you’ll end up paying an extra £20 credit/debit card surcharge, even though there’s only one ticket and one transaction.

  12. I got an EasyCash acount with Halifax and they provide Visa Electron. You can’t go to the bank with this account, I just do a fast transfer to it to pay for Ryanair flights.

    Get me around 5 quid per flight ;-)

    • Dmitrijs: Your luck is up, I guess to many people got Visa Electron cards so now their ‘free’ option is some weird emoney card from Mastercard :)

  13. Yeah, Ryanair sucks badass. When me and my girlfriend flew 2 years ago with them we witnessed a dull scene: two parents and their little child were going to fly with Ryanair and were allowed to take 10kg luggage each. So they put 30kg luggage in two suitcases, and guess what Ryanair told them:

    “We allow only 10kg luggage per person, you must not sum this up. You either split your luggage into three bags, our you have to pay an extra fee.”
    – “But our child is only three years old, she can’t carry a 10kg bag!”
    “Sorry, it’s 10kg *per person*.”
    – “Come on, it’s a people’s business!”
    “You have to pay the fee.”

    That moment I decided to never ever fly with Ryanair again.

  14. After all the negative bits i have read let me say somthing positive about Ryan air, the first time i used Ryan air (on a trip from Faro Portugal to Frankfurt/Hahn in Germany) the fare was 1 €ct, of course all the taxes apply amd so on something around 50€ but… it stil was cheaper then the cab ride to the airport , we (me and my girlfriend) got on the plane, a brand new 737 just flown in from Boeing in Seattle on maiden voyage and it was a very pleasant trip, have used Ryan air many times since and no complaints so far on many trips from and to the UK, Germany, Spain and Portugal and will keep using it if the route suits my needs. If you know about the rxtra cost and all the other small “pittfalls” one can find a way to dodge them like travelling with little luggage and giving a miss to speedy boarding, now i even print out my boarding pass, that really makes life a lot easyer, no need to stand inline for check in, in short, i like Ryan air and lookin forward if the will provide trips to the US soon too then i will defenitely do this too.

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