Thousands of travellers are in a standstill. At the very beginning of the pandemic Ryanair promised to refund cancelled flights but recently started offering vouchers instead. As result, passengers neither travel nor have their money back.
Travellers who had their Ryanair flights cancelled are facing now a difficult choice. At the start of the pandemic the Irish low-cost carrier waived rebooking fees and offered possibility of getting refund. But a wave of cancellations was growing. That’s why Ryanair was eventually forced to follow the practice the most well-known European airlines began to implement in order to survive. Instead of cash many airlines are actively offering their passengers to obtain a voucher that can be exchanged for tickets in future.
However, this option is not being well accepted by passengers. Despite Ryanair’s confidence that the airline will resume flights in June , no one knows exactly when it happens and which routes will be operated first.
In an interview with German Handelsblatt, Ryanair CEO Michael O’Leary tried to reassure his clients by promising to return the money in a few weeks or months. At the same time he strongly encouraged passengers to use vouchers instead.
We should not forget what situation we are in at the moment. Typically, we can return between 5,000 and 10,000 tickets within a month. We have enough staff to handle so many requests but the number of requests increased by 1000%. And our staff responsible for processing the refund is working from home (…) Even when things return to normal, it will take weeks and months for all requests to be processed. At the same time, the issuance of vouchers is faster. That is why we offer them. But no one will lose their money.