Irish Budget airline Ryanair is negotiating pay cuts, unpaid leave and up to 3,000 job losses with its employees and trade unions, as the coronavirus reduced passenger numbers at the airline by over five million and warns there are ‘difficult’ times ahead.
IN its full-year results to the end of March, the Irish company said revenues rose to €8.49 billion (£7.42 billion) – a 10 per cent increase from the year before. Profit was up 13 per cent at €1 billion, excluding a fuel hedge charge.
However, it said the ongoing pandemic and subsequent travel restrictions suggest the next year will be ‘difficult’ for the carrier. Ryanair has recently been at the centre of a ‘Refund Fiasco’ where passengers who have had flights cancelled have been issued vouchers – but when they try to book again the ticket price is higher so they are asked to pay more than they originally paid.
The majority of its airplanes were grounded from mid-March and the company expects to resume at-most 50 per cent of its scheduled flights during the second quarter (between July and September).
Ryanair, which said it would not be seeking state aid but said the competitive landscape would be distorted as a result of government support for other airlines across Europe.
“We expect that traffic on reduced flight schedules will be subject to significant price discounting, and below-cost selling, from these flag carriers with huge State Aid war chests,” the company said on Monday.
The leading European airline in the low-cost sector is clear that it will register losses of €200 million in the three months until the end of next June , as well as a drop in passenger traffic.