Ryanair must indicate the full price of the ticket when it displays offers on its website, the European Union's top court said on Thursday April 23, although the low cost carrier said that it is already doing so.
The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) made its ruling after the Italian antitrust authority (AGCM) criticised Ryanair in 2011 for prices that did not include value-added tax on domestic flights and fees for check-in and payments by credit card.
The AGCM argued these were unavoidable and should be indicated before a customer begins the booking process. Ryanair took the matter to court, prompting Italy's Council of State to ask the CJEU whether the price elements needed to be included.
Get a FREE Digital Subscription!Enjoy full access to Hospitality Ireland, our weekly email news digest, all website and app content, and every digital issue.
The judges in Luxembourg said that Ryanair has to show in its initial offer's unavoidable and foreseeable taxes, surcharges and fees. Optional price supplements can be left until the start of the booking process, they said.
They found that fees for using a credit card were unavoidable and should be shown in the initial offer.
Check-in fees also need to be shown unless there is at least one option to check in free of charge, and value-added tax applied to the airfare should also be included, but does not have to be included for optional supplements, the judges said.
Ryanair said that its price display policy is fully transparent and that it already complies with the EU court's ruling.
"This matter goes back to 2010 and our price display has since been adjusted," Ryanair said in a statement.
Possible Winter Jobs Cuts
In other Ryanair news, the company may have to lay off 10%-20% of its staff in the winter season as it will operate fewer flights due to the coronavirus crisis, its chief executive, Michael O'Leary, said in a newspaper interview published on Friday April 24.
Citing an expected drop in flights by 20%-30% in the winter schedule, O'Leary told German business daily Handelsblatt that fewer staff will be required.
"I think that job reductions by 10%-20% in winter are almost inevitable," he said. "Passengers will return, but it will take time."
There could also be a second wave of worldwide infections, he said.
When lockdowns end, airports and planes will have to ensure that rules on social distancing are enforced and that protective gear is provided. O'Leary has backed anti-virus measures, but rejected calls for planes to fly one-third empty.