A man on a €1,650 all-inclusive holiday was left “furious” after his group was forced to pay an extra €320 to fly home.
The 27-year-old father claims that Ryanair had not told him and his three friends that they needed to check in online for the flight from Palma to Manchester.
However, the airline said the passengers’ problems arose because they booked their flights through an unauthorized online travel agent.
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The Leeds man told the Manchester Evening News: “The holidays were great and we had no problem flying from Manchester to Palma.
“But when we went to check-in at Palma airport on our return flight, we arrived more than two hours before our flight, only to be told: ‘you have six minutes to check-in’.
“They couldn’t find my reservation. The woman at the check-in counter tried to help, but my email address that I had used to book everything with (online travel agent) On The Beach, didn’t work. It kept saying no reservation available.
“Then the airport staff charged the four of us £30 each to check in. We were absolutely furious. We didn’t have to pay that in Manchester.”
“That’s a lot of money to pay. We didn’t have any extra money, so my friend had to pay with her credit card. We’re still trying to pay it back. I’m a full-time parent, so any money I lose is less money for me.” son”.
The group had booked the four-day holiday worth £1,300 (€1,530) through online travel agency On The Beach, which included £475 (€560) Ryanair return flights, four-star hotel stars and bus transfer.
They were then shocked to discover there was a £30 (€35) charge for each passenger to check in, which the man claimed they had not been informed of beforehand.
After checking in, the group faced another £38 (€45) charge for checking their bags, as they had not booked priority boarding tickets for the flight.
However, On The Beach insists passengers have been warned that not checking in online could incur airport check-in fees, in line with Ryanair’s policies.
A Ryanair spokesperson said: “The problems these passengers encountered are a direct result of having booked their flights through an unauthorized online travel agent (OTA). Ryanair does not have any business relationship with any OTA, and in this case, the OTA failed to inform the passenger of Ryanair’s online check-in and baggage policies, resulting in the passenger being correctly charged a check-in fee at airport £30 per passenger at Palma airport. and a £38 gate baggage fee.
“Ryanair urges customers to always book direct as OTAs may provide Ryanair with incorrect email addresses, contact details and payment details, preventing Ryanair from communicating directly with the customer to share information and service updates. essential flights, including check-in directions, possible departure time, changes, delays, cancellations, and refund updates.”
On The Beach “strongly rejected any suggestion that we provide false or misleading information to Ryanair or our customers.”
A spokesperson for the online travel agency added: “Our communication with the customer provided all the necessary flight information to check in online, including reference number, unique email address and baggage allowance.
“We also warn that the lack of online check-in could lead to airport check-in fees. We are sorry to hear that the customer incurred these charges, but this unfortunate incident is a direct consequence of Ryanair’s aggressive anti-competitive campaign against travel agents and their clients, who are being punished and treated like second class citizens for choosing us instead of booking directly through Ryanair.
“Millions of customers choose to book with On The Beach every year without any difficulty because we offer choice, convenience, competitive pricing and protection from ATOL and the Package Travel Regulations, something that cannot be offered by booking flights alone.
“As package organizers, we have a responsibility to manage all elements of a package trip for our customers. Instead, Ryanair continues to impose onerous conditions on its customers, charging additional fees and causing confusion. It is critical that this behavior ends.” unfair and anti-competitive”.
A Ryanair spokesperson responded: “Like any business, Ryanair has the right to determine its own distribution model. Ryanair has decided to deal directly with its customers, and not with intermediaries who seek to take advantage of Ryanair’s innovation and investment in many cases only to impose intermediate surcharges on air fares.
“This innovation allows Ryanair to ensure flight safety, security and compliance with public protocols, while providing the best choice, care and lowest fares to its customers. We would ask On the Beach to respect the Ryanair’s distribution policy and also to its own customers (who no doubt understandably assume that a company posing as a package arranger has commercial agreements in place with its suppliers) by ceasing to sell Ryanair flights”.
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