Family left out of pocket by Ryanair's cancellations

Ryanair's boss Michael O'Leary is rushing to recruit 120 new pilots within "the next week or two" to avert the prospect of a new wave of cancelled flights.

'Piloting is very highly skilled, but I challenge any pilot to explain how it is a hard job or how they are overworked, or how anybody who by law can't fly more than 18 hours a week could possibly be suffering from fatigue, ' he said. The bonus payments are also conditional to pilots working over 800 flight hours in the year ending October 2018.

It is now embroiled in a dispute with its pilots over how to avoid further cancellations, with the workers turning down bonuses in return for foregoing some holidays.

Ryanair pilots are leaving in droves, with more than 700 walking out in 12 months - up 75 per cent on the year before.

The letter, signed by pilots based at 32 European airports, said agreeing to change this model would "help keep our planes in the air" and make sure that "cancellations will be minimised".

The carrier's pilot shortage was probably exacerbated by rival budget-airline Norwegian Air, which has been poaching its cabin crews.

He accused some pilots of being "precious about themselves" and "full of their own self importance".

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"I want to say personally, to each and every one of you who work in Ryanair, I'm sorry for the mess that we have created over the past week over the rosters", added Mr O'Leary.

Ryanair pilots who have four-week blocks of holiday owing following the rota mix-up will be told to take three and save the fourth until January, Mr O'Leary told the AGM.

A source told Reuters that a letter had been approved by pilots at 17 of 85 Ryanair bases demanding new permanent, contracts under local labor law, though this could not be independently verified by Reuters. We will be reasonable. "We have only taken this decision to cancel this small proportion of our 2,500 daily flights so that we can provide extra standby cover and protect the punctuality of the 98 percent of flights that will be unaffected by these cancellations".

"We don't need their agreement".

Up to 400,000 passengers were affected by the cancellations.

"Michael O'Leary's statements are disgusting, we regularly fly over 40-44 hours in a week, 50-60 duty hours, waking up at 4 am plus commuting long distances".

One shareholder told him: "This is a complete cock-up".

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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