Italy and Spain are Investigating Ryanair’s ‘Illegal’ New Baggage Fees
This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.
Last month Ryanair introduced a new and incredibly convoluted baggage policy, which penalizes customers who bring aboard large carry-on luggage.
Two European countries are now investigating the airline for violating air transport regulations because of the airline’s new rules.
Before the rule change, Ryanair allowed customers to gate-check large carry-on bags for free. The airline now wants passengers to purchase priority boarding, which comes with one free large and small carry-on bag. However, the airline will cap the amount of people who can purchase priority boarding, therefore forcing some passengers to pay higher checked baggage fees.
Ryanair says the move wasn’t about making more money, but to discourage passengers who were gate-checking bags, which in turn slowed down the boarding process and caused delays. If passengers don’t purchase priority boarding they’re encouraged to check their bag at the airline’s check-in desk, which will cost more than priority boarding.
Italy’s antitrust agency and a Spanish consumer protection group have filed complaints against the airline’s new fees. Italy said, “hand luggage was ‘an essential element of transport'” according to the BBC, while Spain’s Facua-Consumers in Action group said the change causes “serious harm to consumers, violates their rights and breaches the basic conditions of the air transport contract.”
Facua argues that Ryanair is breaking Spain’s Air Navigation Law, which requires carriers to transport hand-luggage in the cabin for free.
Because the new baggage rules are so confusing, Italy says that it misrepresents what the final price of a trip will actually cost. While this makes sense, it’s a bit confusing as to why authorities would act now — Ryanair has always tacked on hoards of ancillary fees to their tickets. In fact, 27 percent of its revenue came from fees in 2017.
“If its unfair commercial practice on hand luggage is confirmed, Ryanair… should reimburse all its customers who suffer unfair additional costs,” the Italian Codacons consumer protection association said in a statement.
However, the airline doesn’t seem to be worried about the probes.
“We look forward to co-operating with this Italian inquiry,” said Ryanair spokesman Kenny Jacobs. “All Ryanair customers are free to bring one piece of carry-on bag onboard. But no airline customer has a right to unlimited carry-on bags.”
Meanwhile, Ryanair has been hit by a wave of pilot strikes that have left hundreds of flights cancelled affecting tens of thousands of customers.
Featured image by Manuel Queimadelos Alonso/Getty Images.
Welcome to The Points Guy!
Earn 90,000 bonus miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new card in the first three months of card membership. Offer ends 11/10/2021.
With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.
- Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 Bonus Miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer expires 11/10/2021.
- Earn up to 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost® per year. After you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 10,000 MQMs two times per year, getting you closer to Medallion® Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion® Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights.
- Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
- Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets.
- Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
- Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $75 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
- Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
- Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®.
- Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
- No Foreign Transaction Fees.
- $250 Annual Fee.
- Terms Apply.
- See Rates & Fees