‘Now, let me just start by saying that I’m just *guessing* that Ryanair has a new seating policy, because I understand that the airline themselves have refuted the suggestion of such a cynical, money making scheme…’
Therefore, this blog post is purely based on my personal experience of flying with the airline. Obviously the fact that, in all six instances recently (June, July and August) I’ve been allocated a different seat, in a different row from my husband (which never happened before I refused to pay an extra fee to be sat next to him) is merely a very odd coincidence. As it is for the thousands of other travellers that suddenly started complaining about the change. Talk about strange, huh?
Yes, yes, I know you get what you pay for. And, yes, I know that Ryanair literally give zero f*cks about their passengers, but isn’t this yet another kick in the bollocks for their loyal customers? We’re already making you money, so why is it you feel the need to squeeze more out of us?? It’s not like you’re suddenly offering us an additional service we didn’t have before. We’re still paying a small fortune (as on most airlines) for a measly sandwich and a soft drink, and we’re still being asked to donate to the charities you support with our extra change (which we have less of these days since you’re charging us extra for seats…). What are you gaining (money aside) from pissing off your regulars? I mean, your reputation already sucks – so WTF are you doing?
To be honest, I can take the new change as, for a couple of hours, I don’t care who I’m sitting next to in my randomly chosen but coincidentally ALWAYS middle seat. I’m a big girl; I can travel without my husband right next to me. Honestly; I’m good with that. He goes to work in a different place from me every day, so I have learned to cope with his absence for 12 hours straight (it’s hard, but I get through…) What I have no time for is that you’re also splitting up families…with children, and also, that you’re blatantly lying through your teeth about it. TELL US! We know what you’re doing; we’re not stupid! The fact that you’re actually denying that there’s been a change is incredible. Also, it makes you more hated than usual; which is quite the accomplishment, BTW.
Whilst I know that you care not about your passengers; their comfort; wellbeing; or actual lives, I also know that your flights are mostly OK, despite your best efforts. You offer flights to destinations that are nowhere near where people actually *want* to go, but they are cheap enough that everyone can afford them. Plus, we get to go to towns we would never otherwise see. Like Charleroi, or Beauvais, or Skanska, or Glasgow Prestwick (which, by the way isn’t actually in Glasgow, despite the fact that you refer to it that way…), so you’re creating jobs and a tourism industry where previously there was nothing, in some cases. And I love that; I honestly do. I simply want you to stop lying.
After a recent flight to and from Naples, my husband and I were highly amused by our different seats and decided to join in with the rest of the passengers on the half empty flight, which was to simply switch positions after takeoff. Les and I were 15 rows apart, despite us each having spare seats on either side of us. Once in motion, we moved to the seats you told us weren’t available. And so did everyone else. Isn’t it amazing how that worked out?? We also, much to the annoyance of the purser, boarded at different ends of the aircraft (as instructed) despite having both boarding cards held on my husband’s phone. This meant that I caused a huge queue by not being able to prodcuce my card and simply explained that Les was somehow seated in 25B and, as we were travelling together, we had our boarding cards on one device as it was easier (we thought…) than having two. I was promptly marched up to the back of the plane to find my husband and my boarding pass, only to realise he was sitting, lonely, in the middle seat of a row, by himself. What were the chances of that??
After returning home, I caught an episode of Watchdog where the rep from Ryanair categorically denied that the airline had started to split people up, despite overwhelming evidence showing that the airline had started to split people up.
‘The rep even managed to keep a straight face when challenged by a 15 strong hen party who had all miraculously managed to be given separate rows and seats. As coincidences go; that’s incredible… even for you…’
We’re probably still going to fly with you as we’re mostly OK with putting our dignity to one side and selling our souls to you in return for a reasonably priced flight; particularly when most of them are so short. I, for one, found it charming to be sat between a Dutch couple (Row 1, seats A and C) on my return flight from Brussels the other day (Row 1, seat B). We had a lovely time talking about your new policy and having a chuckle about just how stupid you think we are. However, the flight was on time and you finally let us on board with that hand baggage you’re always saying can be stored above our heads, but which seems to generally end up in the hold, and the flight was excellent, with pleasant staff and lovely passengers. So, despite your best attempts to get increase your profits, I’d like to let you know that it didn’t work on me, or any other passenger that was playing musical chairs during our journey.
If anything, the time away from the distraction of my husband merely gave me time to concentrate on writing this. And for that, I’d like to thank you. Also, while I’m here, I’d like to extend my gratitude to your flight crew, who must put up with some amount of abuse because of the new policy that isn’t really a policy. You don’t pay them nearly enough, which is odd, given that new revenue stream you have. You used to legit be the low cost airline, but your fees have slowly gone up and up and now you’re kinda on a par with many others. Still, luckily for you, I’m stubborn enough to refuse to let you charge me extra for a seat that I already paid for, so you’re stuck with me every now and then. You have so much more to thank your cabin crew for than you know…