September 02, 2009

The Ryanair's Game

Cheap flights around the world are becoming more and more popular nowadays. In Europe, there are some companies really competitive, and they are capable of doing anything to beat the prices of their competitors. They put their prices as down as €0,00 (zero euros, which may be different than US$0,00 - zero dollars) to catch customer's attention, but then they come with a lot of hidden fees, which the customer has to be careful. They are all there, in the so awfully called Terms and Conditions. I call this The Ryanair's Game, because to my own healthy and well being, Particularly regarding to Ryanair, which is one of most aggressive in terms of prices and one of the worst - not to say the worst - in terms of customer services.

Starting from the check-in process which can only be made by internet. If you don't have internet access and have to call their ticket desk, your ticket flight will aggregate an extra "ticket desk" fee. If you are not european, there in the terms and conditions is stated that you will need an extra stamp in your online boardind pass. For what? For nothing, as other non-budget companies don't have this rule. It's there just to catch the ones who don't have the habit of reading the tiny letters. The same with the "40 minutes before departing check-in closing rule", which only Ryanair (maybe other low-budget companies) has. Flying Aerlingus to the USA, for instance, I was directed to the plane mere 20 minutes before departing! By Ryanair, in other hands, I missed a flight in London Stansted Airport because I call the check-in desk 37 minutes before the departure. The boarding area was only 5 minutes walking fromn the security, so I was plenty of time to get the plane, but they are strictly irreducible: No boarding within 40 minutes to depart!

So, you have two options: pay more to fly a proper airline and be treated as an human being, or play the game of slyness.