Category Archives: Ryanair

Ryanair signs agreement with Portuguese Pilot Union SPAC – BALPA (UK) sign seniority and base transfer agreements, adds 2 new routes from Cardiff

Ryanair on October 19 announced that it has signed an agreement with the Portuguese pilot union SPAC, which will provide for seniority and base transfer agreements, to cover all of Ryanair’s directly employed pilots in Portugal. Negotiations with SPAC on a full CLA under Portuguese Law with local contracts will now commence before the end of October.

Ryanair also this week signed similar agreements with BALPA in the UK and ANPAC in Italy covering all of Ryanair’s directly employed UK and Italian Pilots. Following negotiations in Madrid this week,  Ryanair also expects to sign a recognition agreement with Spanish pilot union SEPLA shortly, which will pave the way for rapid negotiations on a CLA, and under Spanish law.

Ryanair’s Chief People Officer, Eddie Wilson said:

“These signed agreements with our pilot unions in Portugal, the UK, Italy  and shortly in Spain, demonstrate the considerable progress we’re making in concluding union agreements with our people in our major EU markets.

The recent wave of airline failures in Europe including Primera Air, Cobalt, Air Azur, and Small Planet (GER), as well as base closures/cuts announced by many of Europe’s major airlines in response to higher oil prices and lower air fares, have given a significant stimulus to these union negotiations over recent weeks. Ryanair’s pilots and cabin crew recognise that they enjoy better pay, better rosters, and significantly better job security than their counterparts at many other EU airlines, and we for our part, are recognising and working with unions to conclude agreements which address the major issues of concern to our pilots and cabin crew in all our major EU markets.

I expect that these agreements in Spain, and Portugal in particular, will encourage the cabin crew unions in both those countries to remove competitor airline employees (who have been blocking progress) and to quickly conclude cabin crew agreements in those countries, as that’s what our Portuguese and Spanish cabin crew are now demanding.”

In other news, Ryanair launched its Cardiff Summer 2019 schedule with 2 new routes to Barcelona and Malta and 4 routes in total, as it doubles its Cardiff traffic.

Photo: Ryanair.

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Ryanair cuts its FY19 guidance by 12% due to higher oil prices, higher EU261 costs, and weaker fares due to recent strikes, will close 3 bases

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Ryanair today, October 1, lowered its full year profit guidance (excluding Laudamotion) from a current range of €1.25bn – €1.35bn, to a new range of €1.10bn – €1.20bn due to:

– Lower traffic and weaker close in fares in September, caused by 2 days of coordinated
pilot/cabin crew strikes in Germany, Holland, Belgium, Spain and Portugal;

– Lower Q3 fares as forward bookings (particularly for the Oct school mid-terms and
Christmas) and customer confidence are affected by fear of further strikes;

– Higher EU261 care and re-accommodation costs arising from these recent strikes; and

– Higher prices ($82pbl) for our unhedged oil (10%).

Ryanair noted that Q2 and Q3 traffic and fares will be somewhat lower than expected largely as a result of these 2 recent –5 country– strikes, which are being incited by competitor employees, despite the fact that Ryanair has agreed to meet union demands for local contracts, local law, and a 5 week arbitration with pilots in Germany when the VC Union sought a prolonged 5 month arbitration.

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Ryanair’s Michael O’Leary said:

“While we successfully managed 5 strikes by 25% of our Irish pilots this summer, 2 recent coordinated strikes by cabin crew and pilots across 5 EU countries has affected passenger numbers (through flight cancellations), close in bookings and yields (as we re-accommodate disrupted passengers), and forward air fares into Q3. While we regret these disruptions, we have on both strike days operated over 90% of our schedule. However, customer confidence, forward bookings and Q3 fares has been affected, most notably over the Oct school mid-terms and Christmas, in those 5 countries where unnecessary strikes have been repeated.

These strikes have also added to our EU261 costs while, at the same time, our unhedged fuel costs have jumped as oil prices rise to $82pbl which affects 10% of volumes, and all of Laudamotion’s fuel bill.

Like a number of other EU airlines, we have decided to trim our winter 2018 capacity (by 1%) in response to this lower fare, higher oil and higher EU261 cost environment. We are today implementing the following modest winter cuts (all from Monday, November 5, 2018.)

– Our 4 aircraft Eindhoven base will close, but most routes to/from Eindhoven will continue on overseas based aircraft.

– Our 2 aircraft Bremen base will close with most routes continuing on non-German aircraft.

– Our 5 aircraft Niederrhein base will be cut to 3 aircraft with most routes continuing on the remaining 3 aircraft.

All affected customers have been contacted by email/SMS this morning and will be
re-accommodated on other flights or refunded as they so wish. We will also now consult with our pilots and cabin crew at these 3 bases to minimise job losses.  We expect to offer our pilots vacancies at other Ryanair bases but, as we have a large surplus of winter cabin crew, we will explore unpaid leave and other options to minimise cabin crew job losses.

Revised Outlook (excl. Laudamotion):

We now guide FY19 PAT in a new range of €1.10bn to €1.20bn (previously €1.25bn to €1.35bn).  Q2 fares are down approx. 3% (previously guided +1%) due to the weakness caused to close-in bookings and fares mainly as a result of these 2 (5 country) co-ordinated strikes in Sept. We had until last week expected stronger Q3 fares to recover softer Q2 yields but over the past week Q3 fares, and customer confidence, have been affected by worries about possible strikes. We are now guiding H2 fares down 2% (previously flat).  Our fuel bill will be approx. €460m higher (previously €430m) than last year and “Other Costs” will be negatively impacted by higher EU261 care and re-accommodation costs. Our slower traffic growth in H2 will cut FY19 traffic to 138m (previously 139m excluding Laudamotion).

Since Ryanair agreed to recognise unions in Dec. 2017, we have made substantial progress with our union negotiations in major markets including Ireland, the UK, and more recently Italy, where we have signed multiyear CLA’s with our pilots and cabin crew. Regrettably such progress has been impeded in Spain, Portugal, Germany, Holland, and Belgium where we’ve experienced interference in negotiations with our people and their unions, even when we offer them what they ask for (i.e. local contracts), in writing. When we have successfully negotiated agreements with unions in Ireland, the UK and Italy, and when we have offered local contracts and improved T&C’s to our people in Belgium, Holland, Germany, Portugal and Spain, it is clear that these disruptions are unnecessary, and ill-judged at a time when other airlines are also cutting winter capacity.

Ryanair cannot rule out further disruptions in Q3, which may require full year guidance to be lowered further and may necessitate further trimming of loss making winter capacity. Shareholders should note that the above guidance excludes start up (exceptional) losses in Laudamotion of approx. €150m (which will be consolidated into the Ryanair Group FY19, H1 and FY financial results)”.

Photos: Ryanair.

Ryanair to open two new French bases at Bordeaux and Marseille

Ryanair has announced significant expansion in France, launching two new bases at Bordeaux and Marseille as part of its Summer 2019 schedule, with 2 new based aircraft for each airport (a total investment of $400m) and 27 new routes (connecting 12 countries).

Ryanair’s new Bordeaux base will deliver:

2 based aircraft ($200m investment)

16 new routes: Bari (2 wk), Cologne Bonn (3), Copenhagen (3), Dublin (2), Fez (2), Krakow (2), Manchester (2), Marrakesh (2), Marseille (daily), Mykonos (1), Nantes (4), Naples (2), Ouarzazate (2), Tangier (2),Valencia (2) & Venice Treviso (3)

24 routes for summer 2019

70 weekly flights

Ryanair’s new Marseille base will deliver:

2 based aircraft ($200m investment)

11 new routes: Agadir (2 wk), Alicante (2), Bologna (3), Bordeaux (daily), Bucharest (2), Budapest (2), Manchester (2), Naples (2), Ouarzazate (2) Prague (2) & Warsaw (2)

40 routes for summer 2019

150 weekly flights

 

Ryanair launches major pilot training program in Cork

Ryanair has announced a major new training partnership with Cork-based international flight school, Atlantic Flight Training Academy (AFTA), to deliver a Ryanair/AFTA Mentored Pilot Program. An Tánaiste, Simon Coveney, officially launched the partnership in Cork this morning, which will ensure Ryanair continues to attract highly trained professional pilots to support its continued growth across Europe, and which will create 50 new jobs.

This new 16-month intensive training program gives trainee pilots a structured path to achieve their pilot licence and reach a standard where they are ready to join the Ryanair Boeing 737 type-rating programme. Trainee pilots on the programme will be trained by AFTA instructors using Ryanair procedures as they take their first steps towards becoming Ryanair pilots and over the next 5 years, up to 450 new pilots from across Europe will be recruited and trained by AFTA in Cork, underlining AFTA’s global position in the pilot training market.

Ryanair also launched its biggest ever Cork summer schedule for 2019, with 4 new routes to Budapest, London Luton, Malta and Poznan, more flights to Malaga, and 16 routes in total.

Photo: Ryanair.

Ryanair announces its largest London summer schedule for 2019

Ryanair Boeing 737-8AS WL EI-DCL (msn 33806) (Dreamliner colors) AMS (Ton Jochems). Image: 943514.

Ryanair has announced its biggest ever London Summer 2019 schedule, with 23 new routes (over 180 in total), which will deliver 26 million yearly passengers customers through Ryanair’s four London airports – Stansted, Luton, Southend and Gatwick.

Ryanair’s London S19 schedule will deliver:

3 new aircraft based at Southend

2 more aircraft at Luton (6 in total)

23 new routes including:

3  at  Stansted:   Kiev, Lviv and Nantes

6  at  Luton:       Alicante, Athens, Barcelona, Bologna, Cork, Malaga

14 at Southend: Alicante, Bilbao, Brest, Copenhagen, Cluj, Corfu, Dublin, Faro, Kosice, Malaga, Milan, Palma, Reus and Venice

Over 180 routes in total

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In other news, last week Ryanair submitted a complaint to the European Commission over discrimination by UK airline controlled NATS at Stansted, who refuse to explain why 52% of all London ATC delays in Q1 were at Stansted while there was zero such delays at Heathrow and just 10% at Gatwick where (NATS’ shareholders) BA and Easyjet are the main airlines.

“We call on the UK Government and EU to take prompt action against NATS who continue to deliver an atrocious service to airlines despite having amongst the highest ATC fees in the EU, and who are blatantly protecting Heathrow at the expense of all other London airports, especially Stansted. We expect the EU to act quickly to ensure a fairer allocation of NATS resources (and delays) to all 5 London airports, instead of protecting Heathrow.”

Ryanair’s Michael O’Leary said:

 “Ryanair is pleased to launch our biggest ever London S 2019 schedule with over 180 routes from our 4 London airports, including 1 new base at Southend and 23 new routes to exciting destinations such as Barcelona, Bilbao,Copenhagenand Kiev. Our S2019 schedule will deliver 26m customers p.a. through Stansted, Luton, Southend and Gatwick, all at the lowest fares, as we continue to grow London traffic, tourism and jobs.   

We remain concerned at the increasing risk of a hard (no-deal) Brexit in March 2019.  While we hope that a 21-month transition agreement from March 2019 will be agreed, recent events in the UK have added uncertainty, and we believe that the risk of a hard Brexit (which could lead to flights being grounded for a period of days or weeks) is being underestimated.

In other news, the company rejected false claims made by Belgian union CNE that strike action by its small minority of cabin crew on September 28 would cause “travel chaos”.

Ryanair pointed to its experience during previous strikes which included five days of strikes by less than 25% of its Irish pilots this summer, and on each of those days, Ryanair completed 280 of its 300 flights to/from Ireland, because over 75% of its Irish pilots continued to work normally.  In total yesterday Ryanair operated over 2,200 flights and carried over 380,000 customers with no “chaos”.

Yesterday in Germany, despite a strike by pilots and cabin crew, over 70% of Ryanair’s German based pilots and cabin crew reported for work and Ryanair completed over 250 of its daily schedule of 400 flights, because 150 flights had been pre-cancelled on Tuesday September 11 with the small group of affected passengers being reaccommodated and/or refunded.

Ryanair expects that even if there is another limited cabin crew strike on 28th September, the vast majority of its cabin crew across Europe will work as normal.  It also expects a significant majority of its cabin crew in Spain, Italy, Belgium, the Netherlands and Portugal will also work normally, as they have during previous strikes, and accordingly there will not be any “travel chaos” or “widespread disruptions”.

Ryanair’s Kenny Jacobs said:

Repeated false claims made by these unions about “travel chaos” have proven to be unfounded.  While we regret the limited strike actions that have taken place this summer, in all cases we have judiciously pre-cancelled a small number of our 2,500 daily flights in order to minimise customer disruption and inconvenience.

We object to these lurid and inaccurate press headlines which wrongly refer to “travel chaos”, despite the fact that during the seven days of partial strikes by a small minority of our pilots and cabin crew this summer, there has been very little disruption and absolutely no “chaos”. 

 If there is a further unsuccessful cabin crew strike on the 28th Sept next then, as we demonstrated in Germany yesterday, Ryanair will pre-advise customers of a small number of flight cancellations, and the overwhelming majority of Ryanair’s flights and services that day will operate as normal, and we will carry the overwhelming majority of the 400,000 passengers who will be scheduled to fly with us that day.”

Top Copyright Photo (all others by Ryanair): Ryanair Boeing 737-8AS WL EI-DCL (msn 33806) (Dreamliner colors) AMS (Ton Jochems). Image: 943514.

Ryanair aircraft slide show:

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Ryanair continues its build-up of summer flights from Malta

Ryanair Boeing 737-8AS WL EI-EKW (msn 38506) TLS (Paul Bannwarth). Image: 943421.

Ryanair is planning to operate 61 routes from Luqa, Malta next summer. This represents 10 new routes for Malta.

Ryanair has also announced a new route from Cardiff to Malta, with a twice-weekly service commencing in April 2019, which will be a part of Ryanair’s Summer 2019 schedule.

Top Copyright Photo (all others by Ryanair): Ryanair Boeing 737-8AS WL EI-EKW (msn 38506) TLS (Paul Bannwarth). Image: 943421.

Ryanair aircraft slide show:

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Ryanair is coming to Exeter, German pilots to strike tomorrow

Ryanair Boeing 737-8AS WL EI-EBC (msn 37520) BSL (Paul Bannwarth). Image: 943420.

Ryanair has announced its first ever flights from Exeter, its newest airport, with 3 new routes to Malaga, Malta and Naples commencing in April, as part of its Summer 2019 schedule.

In other news, Vereinigung Cockpit union issued this statement:

Vereinigung Cockpit (VC) announced a 24-hour strike affecting all Ryanair flights from Germany on Wednesday, September 12, 2018 to push for its demands in talks with the Irish carrier on wages and work conditions according to Reuters.

The union has called on all German-based pilots to strike the airline from Wednesday 0101 GMT until Thursday 0059 GMT.

Ryanair reacted this way:

Ryanair on September 11, 2018 condemned the surprise and unnecessary threatened pilot strike in Germany on Wednesday, September 12. The VC Union, which threatened this strike late on Monday evening, has not consulted with Ryanair’s German pilots, and has no reasonable basis for disrupting customers travel plans when Ryanair has already agreed to negotiate local contracts in Germany, agreed to mediation, and has proposed Mr Kieran Mulvey, who successfully mediated the Irish pilots dispute, is therefore familiar with all of these issues, and is available to work immediately.

Ryanair condemned the VC Union and its negotiator Ingolf Schumacher, who has failed to consult with Ryanair’s German pilots, who last Friday evening was unable to explain any difference between mediation and arbitration in Germany (when Ryanair has agreed to mediation), and who has called this strike at short (24 hours) notice, which can only damage Ryanair’s business and some of its bases in Germany, and may lead to aircraft and job cuts in the German market this winter.

Ryanair has written to its passengers this morning confirming that it will try to run its full German schedule tomorrow, September 12. Passengers are being offered a free move to flights on Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday if they so wish, and Ryanair has also written to its German based pilots and cabin crew this morning advising them to work as normal tomorrow Wednesday, and to put its customers first rather than blindly following this damaging and unnecessary strike threat.

Meanwhile Ryanair has made this statement concerning ATC staff shortages on social media:

Copyright Photo (all others by Ryanair): Ryanair Boeing 737-8AS WL EI-EBC (msn 37520) BSL (Paul Bannwarth). Image: 943420.

Ryanair aircraft slide show:

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