Before we get in to the nitty gritty of my rant about my experience with Ryanair lets just put it out there that this is this a ‘Low Fare Airline’. I’m not in anyway expecting an Emirates level of service; I didn’t pay for that so I don’t expect it. This post is about my views on the low fare airline that have left me with the view to NEVER fly with them again. My issues, as extensive as the list include check in, boarding passes and the general demeanor of the staff. If they’re not miserable or rude they are scruffy, untidy and unprofessional!
Check me OUT!
Both flights where a joke in terms of baggage drop of. Birmingham, UK and Alicante, Spain have at least 5 desks in which to drop off luggage but they only like to use the one. I think it must be a competition to see just how long you can make your queue of holidaymakers or to see just how far you can push someone before they snap at their incompetency. The check in lady in Birmingham was more interested in a joyous conversation on the telephone than with my luggage and passport. On our return we found that packing EXACTLY THE SAME things somehow weighed an extra 5kg. After the embarrassment of having to guestimate the cost of our dirty washing and Spanish trinkets we repacked the contents of our case on the floor of the airport showing our fellow passengers everything we had worn for the last two weeks, finally had the baggage accepted without the €50 surcharge (of which was originally pronounced as €15. Fifteen euros I would have just paid, 50 and I’m repacking that bag as many times as necessary, with the view to just leaving my dads dirty pants behind!). Can someone explain the idea behind their logic here? We were asked to take 5kg out of our case to add to our handluggage. In doing this we made our handluggage heavier…obviously. The check out lady then asks, in that exaggerated broken English, that I am sure she has put on, if we would like to submit one of our handluggage bags for FREE. After staring blankly at the lady in total bewilderment for a few moments I handed over my carry on now weighing in excess of 10kg.
So that’s 5kg over weight = €50. 10kg carry on, of which she has just seen me unpack and repack = Free. Logic? I can’t find any. ‘Have a good flight’ she said.
Due to the incompetency of the checking in and boarding process the flight was delayed for 30 minutes, it must have been due to the fact of the entire flight repacking their luggage twice and then struggling with extortionately priced wifi to get their boarding pass ready. We stood in a conga-line of overheated tourists many of whom had sacrificed half of their worldly possessions to get this far in order to board. Getting hotter and more pissed off by the minute the 2hr20minute flight was finally in our reach only if you could find space to store all that extra hand luggage you were then carrying.
Why don’t they just scrap the rule for an on board bag + accessory. Have a one bag or no bag policy. Not only will this make people get to their seats quicker it will prevent the extra work of extra baggage. Increase the check in luggage weight. Suitcase allowences used to be 22kg/25kg. The same weight is going on the plane regardless to how and by simply increasing the check in weights one would alleviate the queues in the airport of people packing and unpacking, it would then stop the need for 2 carry on bags and in turn stop the extra work when the overhead lockers run out of space. And don’t give me the excuse of manhandling weight, its all done on conveyor belts now and the luggage weight used to be higher than 15kg per bag!
Board of Passes
We are in the 21st Century now where there is an app version of every daily task barr going to the toilet (unless I’ve just not got round to downloading that one yet). In order to avoid yet another charge we opted for the app style boarding pass. Firstly it’s a bit weird, just handing over your phone. As a party of 3 we had one booking and therefore 3 passes in one app…simple right?! This was like the krypton factor for airport staff. Checking the passports against the app and the flight numbers on the virtual ticket against the booking 3 times at different posts we were checked again on flight, once the phone with the boarding pass was 10 seats deep up the isle the cabin crew member decided that she needed to check all pages of the booking confirmation once again. This was a download from their server, which had been checked when our luggage was put through, at security, at the boarding gate and now on the entry to the plane. Did she honestly think the numbers would have magically changed in the walk down the bridge/tunnel thingy?!
What is wrong with a normal check in desk where they print off a boarding card?! You get a ticket on the bus for a £2 fare, if I’m paying £200+ the least I could get is a paper boarding pass.
Not everyone is happy in their job and that I totally understand that. Being a flight attendant must be a thankless job at times but the Ryanair staff in my experience all need to go back to their handbooks on customer service. They are unhelpful, obsessed with each other rather than the passengers and many of them seem to make it their sole mission to be as sour faced as possible. It’s just not professional and they don’t seem to use any humility in their work at all. Lets not even go into the on board costs! €5 for a coffee and a stale croissant…I think not! Whatever happened to a standard cup of instant coffee has left them at Ryanair too. Now you get a ‘suprlid’ which is basically a beaker with a filter for a lid of which you drink through, it’s a bit like sucking the waste disposal at the barista! You want two options and you can still charge the same €3, black coffee or white coffee you don’t need to be brewing it yourself on an ill fitted tray table looking out at the hazard yellow seat in front. Are they sponsored by ikea or something?!
With only 30 minutes left of the flight the Captain addressed the cabin with the opening lines of ‘Don’t worry, I’m not going to sell you anything…’ even he knows how much this company take the piss! The toy fanfare they play upon touching the tarmac simply masked the sigh of relief made by every passenger on the flight.
Our flights weren’t expensive, I didn’t book them expecting a 5* service but I expected at least a 2.2.5*! I expected a professional service from a professional company. Ryanair may be low cost but the job in itself is still the same and human nature shouldn’t alter in terms of the low cost either. I have flown with many low cost airlines in the past and never had such an infuriating experience that ended up being that bad it was comical. I was annoyed from check in, by the time I’d got to my seat, without a seat pocket may I add, I was never going to feel much better. They give you a menu with nowhere to put it after the 1 minute of reading it provides and then they faff about running up and down microwaving food that stinks, they genuinely make you feel like everything is just too much effort.
All in all, if you add up the extra costs at booking, luggage charges, the expense of using oxygen on board, the ‘10% off’ the not-so-duty free isn’t all that great of a deal, not forgetting the charity scratch cards which on the outbound flight were 7 for the price of five and the return flight came in on a BOGOF deal – it may be low cost whilst searching for the flights but the number of added on extras it’s probably no cheaper than any other company in terms of what you actually get. Ryanair – use if you dare. For me, I’ll have think twice before flying with them again, or travel naked with a boarding pass taped to my forehead and my passport on a string around my neck.