Ryanair Under Pressure Over Its Seating Policy

Published on : Tuesday, June 13, 2017

ryanair-aircraft-7-1-PRESSURE IS MOUNTING ON Ryanair over the frequency with which it separates passengers, including families with children, who don’t pay for selected seats.

Increasingly people those who are flying with the budget airline are coming forward with stories of how they were split rows apart from their loved ones, or “punished” with a middle seat after checking in with a randomly selected seat.

Media reports stated the growing controversy last week and has since been inundated with travellers accusing the carrier of a “nasty and spiteful ploy to get as much money” as they can. Seat selection costs as much as £11 each way, adding £22 onto a return fare.

Social media, too, is full of passengers reporting that they have been checked into seats rows away from their travelling companions, many posting screenshots of their allocation.

Kyle Green, a travel and food blogger, checked in for his flight to Palma in Majorca this week, with his wife and toddler, only to find Ryanair had separated the pair of them.

“I believe the situation was contrived to make us (as we then did) pay more to move one person to sit next to the other,” he said.

“We are travelling with a 23 month-old… so really need both of us next to each other to help our little girl stay occupied.

“We have flown with a wide range of airlines with our daughter including several long-haul journeys and have never had our assigned seats randomly chosen to not be next to each other.

“It may seem tight to complain about £9 (likely to be £18 once we look to get our return seats organised) but this is the most disturbing effort we have experienced of money being extorted from us by an airline.”

Many of those rounding on the airline say the seat allocation screen shows dozens of empty seats around them, or report that planes have not been full on departure.

“Twice now I’ve checked in with Ryanair to be split from the hubby only to find two empty seats at the side of me,” wrote Laura Simpson on Twitter.

Another said that each member of a group of five had all been put on different rows, while one commenter on Telegraph Travel said that Ryanair had split 23 passengers up separately.

Ryanair denies the accusations. The airline says its stance on seat allocation has not changed since 2014.

“There is no change in Ryanair policy,” the Irish carrier said in a statement. “When a customer does not purchase a seat, they are randomly allocated a seat, which has always been our policy.


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