Ryanair has today announced that a further 400,000 passengers will have their flights cancelled between November 2017 and March 2018.
The news comes just over a week after Ryanair cancelled up to 50 flights a day between mid-September and the end of October, affecting 315,000 customers.
The budget airline says the latest announcement, which will see it suspend 34 routes and make “schedule changes" to other routes, affects “less than one flight per day". It adds that “less than 1% of the 50 million customers Ryanair will carry this winter are affected".
Ryanair’s chief executive, Michael O’Leary, says:“We sincerely apologise to those customers who have been affected by last week’s flight cancellations, or these sensible schedule changes announced today. While over 99% of our 129 million customers will not have been affected by any cancellations or disruptions, we deeply regret any doubt we caused existing customers last week about Ryanair’s reliability, or the risk of further cancellations.”
These cancellations mean there is “no risk of further roster related flight cancellations”, according to the airline.
The flights chaos has occurred due to an error with Ryanair’s annual leave allocation, which meant pilots were due more time off than they had been given.
Am I affected?
Ryanair says those affected by its latest cancellations have received an email today notifying them.
The suspended routes, which includes certain flights from Edinburgh, Gatwick, Newcastle, and Stanstead airports, can be found on the Ryanair website.
Ryanair say if you haven’t received an email from it, your flight is unaffected.
What can I do if Ryanair cancels my flight?
Affected customers are entitled to alternative flights or full refunds.
In addition, all affected customers, including the 315,000 customers whose flights were cancelled earlier this month, have also been emailed a 40 euros (80 euros return) travel voucher which they can use to book – during October – a flight on any Ryanair service between October 2017 and March 2018.
You can also potentially claim on your travel insurance for lost holiday bookings or extra expenses if your flights are cancelled by Ryanair. However, there will likely be an excess payment to make any claim so it is important to check your insurance policy to see what it covers. You also can’t claim for the same thing twice from the airline and your insurer.
If you have had flights cancelled that were paid for by credit card, and the airline or insurer refuse to pay out, you could try claiming to your card provider under Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act. This applies to spends of between £100 and £30,000.
Spending below this amount or on debit card may be able to be reclaimed under ‘Chargeback’ but unlike Section 75, this is not a legal requirement.
Can I claim compensation?
Under EU rules, if your flight departed from an EU airport or is an EU airline landing at an EU airport, and your flight was cancelled within 14 days of departure, you may also be eligible to claim additional compensation of between 125 euros and 600 euros.
According to law firm Bott & Co, the cancellations could mean more than 200,000 passengers will be due flight cancellation compensation.
How much you get depends on when you were told about the cancellation, the distance of your flight, and the delay to your journey based on the arrival time of the rescheduled flight you’re offered. Compensation is also only payable if the cancellation is the airline’s fault, which in Ryanair's case it is.
You can apply directly on the Ryanair website for compensation (one claim per booking).
This web form can also be used to reclaim expenses caused by the cancellation, such as needing to make extra hotel bookings or pay for additional meals. Ensure you retain any receipts from extra spending incurred as they will be used as evidence for your claim.