Ryanair has shared today that it is cutting its October capacity by another 20%. This figure is on top of the initial cuts already announced last month. The low-cost carrier says that this move is a result of damage caused to forward bookings by government travel restrictions.
According to a press release seen by Simple Flying, a Ryanair representative said that the company is disappointed to reduce its October capacity from 50% of 2019 levels to 40%. Ultimately, the firm feels that authorities are mismanaging travel policies amid the coronavirus pandemic. This process is damaging passenger confidence.
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Unsurprisingly, the Irish carrier is supportive of the EU Commission’s plan to tone down intra-EU travel restrictions. Altogether, customers of the airline can’t meet with family or travel for business purposes without quarantining for 14 days.
Subsequently, if the government continues to enforce these measures, Ryanair may have to make similar cuts to its winter schedule. This period runs from November to March.
“We call on Transport Minister Eamon Ryan to explain why over 2 months later he still hasn’t implemented any of the 14 recommendations of the Governments Aviation Task Force which were submitted to Government on 7 July last,” the Ryanair spokesperson said in the press release.
“He should also explain why NPHET has kept Ireland locked up like North Korea since 1 July, while at the same time Italy and Germany removed all intra-EU travel restrictions and have delivered Covid case rates which are less than half the rate, which NPHET has presided over in Ireland.”
The airline summarized its statement by saying air travel across the EU is not the only issue. Above all, it feels that these “defective” travel bans are not a solution.
Challenges across the industry
Cases of the virus are still prevalent across the globe. Moreover, there have been resurgences of outbreaks in several countries.
So, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see governments continuing to enforce strict measures such as quarantines. Moreover, these policies aren’t as stringent as those introduced by some nations such as Australia, which prevent most foreign travelers from entering altogether.
Until there is consistent control over the virus, airlines may have to continue with their significant reductions. Perhaps the anticipated vaccines scheduled to be ready by the turn of the year could save the industry. Some of these could be in circulation just in time for airlines to announce their summer schedules.
Nonetheless, the global situation is taking its toll on the aviation industry. Therefore, alternative measures such as PCR testing and robust checks at airports could go a long way until conditions improve.
What are your thoughts about Ryanair cutting its October capacity by another 20%? Do you see this trend continuing through the winter? Let us know what you think of the situation in the comment section.