Sitting together on Ryanair

By | Category: Travel rumblings

Ryanair Business PlusNews broke yesterday that Ryanair would make it mandatory for families to book seats so that they could sit together. Today the news is that only one adult in the family party must pay €4 (yes, its priced in euros not pounds) and all family members would be seated together.

The new rules take effect from September 1st.

This has come about because many families were unwilling to pay for booking seats together. The cabin crew might try to seat them together once they were on the plane but given the high number of passengers who did shell out for preferred seats it was impossible to do.  So, Ryanair have decided to insist that families book one seat and that would get the family seated together.

In typical Ryanair style the imposition is being portrayed as a price reduction because a child’s reserved seat will now cost nothing whereas before a fee would have been charged. But only if you have reserved a seat. For all those who didn’t reserve this is an increase and one that they cannot opt out of paying. So Ryanair make another €4 per family

How much additional revenue will Ryanair make by this move? It’s difficult to calculate because we don’t know how many families didn’t pay for reserved seats in the first place. In June, 10.6 million people travelled with the airline. Let’s say 10% who haven’t used preferred booking but now will have to are families ie 1.6 million and that each family was composed of two adults and two children. With one of those adults paying the airline will make an additional €1.6 million per month or nearly an extra €20 million pa.

Nice money if you can get it; particularly if you make it compulsory.

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