Flying Ryanair, Just How Bad Is It
Day 16/365: Low-cost means what? Let me tell you a story…
People say the customer is always right, but you know what? They’re not. Sometimes they are not, and they need to be told so — Michael O’Leary, CEO of Ryanair
Flying Ryanair starts being fun even before the flight. Actually, it starts messed up in the beginning, when you look for the flight. I always look for my flights using Skyscanner, as I find it to be the best tool to really incorporate all of the possibilities for finding the best deal.
A few nights ago, me and my cousin were looking for flights for Berlin. We really wanted to see all of the museums and try some good German beers and wursts, so we decided on our dates. One night later, we grabbed my laptop, his credit card (he makes more money than me, he has a “real” job) and went on the Ryanair website to book our tickets.
Literally overnight, the ticket prices went up and doubled in value. Moreover, one of the flights, the return flight just vanished from the website. Literally vanished, as if the plane disappeared like the Malaysian Airlines Boeing. I really hope everything is all good and that we’re not about to see a news story about a missing Ryanair plane.
Long story short, we’re going to London in March, just because Ryanair can’t get their shit together.
Baggage and Check-in
The fun really starts after you pay for your tickets. By the way, before you pay, there are a lot of extras that you can buy on top of the regular ticket, which is dirt cheap. You only have one small bag included in the ticket price that you take onboard and another bigger bag which goes in the hold, so if you want a bigger bag, you need to pay 8 times the price of the original ticket.
You want to reserve your seat because you want to do aisle or window? No problem, depending on where you want to sit in the aircraft, that’s going to be another 2 to 16 dollars one way. How about priority boarding, where they let you on the plane 2 minutes before the others? If you want to get a selfie with an empty plane, that’s going to set you back another 5 USD.
The check-in is the best. You can’t print out your boarding pass without paying something extra for it. Yes, you heard that right, Ryanair has a tax for letting you print your boarding pass. You can do it for free within 7 days before the flight, but if you’re like me, you can easily forget about it and end up getting charged 50 USD at the gate for not printing a simple piece of paper.
Let’s say you somehow managed to figure out the boarding pass, the baggage, the priority selfie and everything else and you get onboard the superb Boeing 737–800 aircraft, a beautiful piece of machinery. The first thing you’ll notice are the entertainment facilities. Which are none? Well, except you get to listen to some disco music right before the safety briefing starts.
There are no screens on the back of the seats, so bring an iPad if you still have some money to afford one after all the extras that you paid. In fact, the seats are so small, I always go on a diet 2 weeks before my Ryanair flight. I just don’t want to be deboarded just because I put on a few pounds.
If you want to have some fun onboard, you can buy the most expensive miniature can of soda on Earth. I mean, in the skies. The can will set you back 4 bucks, and if you want to pair that with some chocolate or peanuts, expect to pay some more. And if you really REALLY want some fun, you can buy lottery tickets. Yes, Ryanair has its own lottery.
The reservation system is tricky and probably broken, the check-in process can cost you a ton if not done correctly or forgotten about, the extras you pay for the seats, baggage and useless priority are costly, the seat is small and the leg room virtually zero, the delays are always possible and happen a lot and the entertainment on board is nonexistant or very expensive. So overall, I’d say Ryanair is really one of the best things that have ever happened to flying since forever.
You get exactly what you pay for, and then some. For me, if I need to go to Bucharest, instead of paying 70 bucks for the train, which takes 10 hours and is dirty and just obnoxious, I can book a 20$ return flight and I’m done with it in 2 hours and a half including the time I spent going to and from the airports. Ryanair might be low-cost, but for hundreds of millions of people, it’s a bliss nonetheless, letting them travel for almost free.
I’ve already booked 4 Ryanair flights this year. It was my decision to book Ryanair, so it’s only logical that I’m the one who has to go through all of the above just to fly.
But in the end, if my Ryanair flights are successful, as in, if I get to my destination and back alive, then I guess all of the above has no meaning but to put a little more anxiety on the anxiety pile. Which is fun, as that never killed nobody, but a plane crash… yes, that did killed somebody. Everybody.
At least Ryanair is funny…
Thank you for your time!
My name is Gabriel Iosa, I’m a 25 years old travel enthusiast, food lover, Psychology student, full-time freelancer, writer and Instagram fanatic. You can follow me @gabrieliosa, and if you liked this post, give it exactly 44 claps!
I’m on a mission to write 365 articles in 2018. This is definitely the biggest writing challenge of my life so far. If you’d like to be part of the journey, please follow me here on Medium.com for the daily posts!