Friday, September 12, 2008


Have I ever mentioned I hate Ryanair??? The actual flight and service on board leave me indifferent in general but just booking tickets with them leaves me incensed every time. As you know we had our flights cancelled earlier in the week so have had to go back on their website to rebook. I guess some perverse little nerd has been paid to go through their booking site and flag up every possible point where they can screw you for extra money. The first thing that made me rage was their infant policy. If your child is under two, they are an infant. Here's how it works on a normal old fashioned airline, eg Continental. You can buy an infant ticket at approximately 10% of an adult ticket and sit them on your lap, or, if you are feeling flush, you can buy them a child's ticket at 70% of an adult one and they can sit on their own seat except when the fasten seat belt sign is on at which time they are strapped to your lap. Obviously, not being rich, I usually opt for the first option. On Ryanair you can buy an infant ticket or nothing. So where's the problem? When Ryanair runs its special deals - £1 ticket, free tickets where you pay only taxes etc you aren't allowed to opt for a full price ticket for your infant and your infant doesn't qualify for their special offers, so I have just got into the ludicrous situation where the 4 adults are paying £4 return for seats to Denmark in November, but the infant, who has no seat is paying £16 each way. Why am I not allowed to buy Anna a £1 seat??? Next little annoyance is online check in. Ryanair has decided to charge everyone £8 per person to check in in the airport - funny I thought that was the whole point of the airport. So I opt for online check in to save £8 per person. A box pops up telling me I must use airport check in because I am travelling with an infant even if the infant has no baggage (they aren't allowed any baggage despite paying a ticket 16 times more expensive than the adult accompanying them who is allowed 10kg hand luggage and 15kg in the hold). Discrimination against babies!!!! So I agree to pay their petty little £8 to unnecessarily check Anna in in the airport, meaning I have to go to Edinburgh an hour earlier and they then give me a little pop up box telling me Anna can't check in alone as she is an infant, the adult who is carrying her also needs to check in in the airport at an obligatory cost of £8 despite having no check in bags (which of course had I been taking I'd need to tell them about in advance and pay to check each one into the hold). They are a penny pinching shower of robbers. Finally I ask to pay - they want to add another £8 to my bill, 5 times £8 to be precise. I check the small print - this is a credit card handling fee, not per credit card, not per transaction but per passenger - now they are really taking the piss - the bill is £130 once I add on taxes and they want me to pay an extra £40 credit card handling... Fine I annul the whole thing and delve into my handbag for my debit card instead - yip you guessed it - they then add on £40 debit card handling charge. I try everything - my visa, my mastercard, my American Express and my debit - they all cost the same - there is no way not to incur the £40 charge (unless I maybe try bartering - sending them some sheep perhaps), so how can they justify it as a separate charge??? Ryanair, I hate you!!!!!!!

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