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Ryanair charged fire victims' father to change flight

Ryanair has apologised to Dr Muhammad Taufiq al-Sattar, whose wife and three children were killed in a Leicester house fire, after he was charged €188 (£158) to change his booking on the morning of the fire.

Ryanair's chief executive Michael O'Leary said a letter has been sent sympathising with Dr Taufiq al-Sattar and addressing the airline's handling of the booking change.

Ryanair's chief executive Michael O'Leary said the airline has apologised to Dr Muhammad Taufiq al-Sattar. Credit: Steve Parsons/PA Wire

"I think you have to make exceptions in cases like that and we made an exception last night when we became aware of it," Mr O'Leary said. "We want to respond sensitively to these cases."

The budget airline boss said the Dr Taufiq al-Sattar has been refunded the extra charge.

Ryanair to increase baggage charges for summer

Ryanair intends to increase baggage charges until no-one takes its flights with luggage that needs to go in the hold, the airline's boss said today.

Michael O'Leary added it was likely that "at some point" airlines would start charging even for hand luggage.

Ryanair CEO Michael O'Leary. Credit: Press Association

Speaking at a news conference in London, Mr O'Leary said that Ryanair had increased its charge for hold luggage by €20 (about £17.50) for the summer period.

Asked what was the logic behind charging people more for the summer period, he replied: "That's when they are likely to bring more bags."

Mr O'Leary went on: "We will keep increasing charges until we get rid of (hold) bags."

He said Ryanair had reduced the number of its passengers who checked in hold baggage from 80 percent to 19 percent and that this was saving the airline "a fortune in money".

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Ryanair to cut flights from Stansted Airport by 9%

Low-cost airline Ryanair has said it will cut its flights from Stansted Airport by 9% over the next year.

Ryanair had planned to increase the number of flights to and from the Essex airport by 5% from April, but will now cut 170 flights across 43 routes a week because of increased fees at Stansted.

Ryanair has said that up to to 1,000 jobs could be lost at Stansted Airport. Credit: Press Association

The announcement came after Stansted was sold by Ferrovial/BAA to Manchester Airports Group for £1.5 billion.

Ryanair blamed its decision on a 6% increase in charges at the airport, which it says should be investigated by the Civil Aviation Authority

Ryanair spokesman Robin Kiely said:

"It's bad enough that Ferrovial/BAA has doubled prices over the past six years and presided over record traffic falls at Stansted, but it appears that the CAA now rewards this commercial failure by allowing Ferrovial/BAA to again raise fees in 2013 to compensate for its traffic declines in 2012."

Ryanair admits defeat in Aer Lingus takeover bid

Ryanair has admitted defeat in its takeover bid for Aer Lingus but vowed to fight the decision in the courts.

Ryanair's takeover bid for Aer Lingus has been rejected. Credit: REUTERS/Yves Herman

The European Commission told the airline that the 694 million euro (£596.7 million) buyout plan would be rejected.

The low-cost carrier claimed European chiefs were holding it to much higher standards than any other EU airline.

Ryanair spokesman Robin Kiely said: "It appears clear from this morning's meeting that no matter what remedies Ryanair offered, we were not going to get a fair hearing and were going to be prohibited regardless of competition rules."

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Which? says airlines should not increase fares

The Which? consumer group said there is no reason airlines should increase fares in the light of the European Court of Justice ash cloud ruling.

Today's ruling by the European Court of Justice simply confirms the existing situation relating to the 2010 ash cloud travel disruption - that airlines should reimburse passengers for reasonable costs, including accommodation food and transport.

Airlines already account for compensation in their ticket costs, so there should be no reason for any airline to increase their prices as a result.

– Which? spokesperson

Travellers react to Ryanair compensation ruling

The European Court of Justice has ruled that Ryanair should have compensated passengers whose flights were cancelled because of volcanic ash in 2010.

Twitter users have been reacting to the ruling today:

UK travel association: Ryanair has responsibilities

Gillian Edwards, of travel trade association Abta, has said that today’s ruling by the EU’s top court means Ryanair cannot “wriggle out” of its obligations to customers.

She said:

Today's ruling doesn't change passengers' rights but it does show that Ryanair has the same obligations to its customers as any other airline and can't wriggle out of its responsibilities.

Bob Atkinson, of travelsupermarket.com, has urged passengers to contact airlines as soon as they are delayed to avoid requiring court action.

Ryanair chief: Another crazy decision from the EU court

Ryanair boss Mike O'Leary said today's decision by the European Court was "crazy" and would result in increased airline prices for passengers across Europe. He told Sky News:

Why do we have to take responsibility for delays caused by others? Airlines will be sued by passengers for things that are beyond our control. This is another crazy decision from the EU court. We can't be responsible for providing compensation for the world and his mothers, for situations out of our control.

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