The Ryanair crisis is affecting Europe very badly, and now Cyprus is no longer an exception.
In what is being seen as devastating news for flyers and travelers alike, Ryanair has announced that it will be cancelling flights for Paphos, despite having previously given the assurance that no such thing would happen.
The cancellation of Paphos flights comes two weeks after the low cost Irish carrier service announced that it will be cancelling over 2,100 flights going till the end of October, and only a few days after it added several other flights to the list which were originally scheduled for November 2017 to March 2018.
The latest series of cancellations include the very popular route that connects Paphos in Cyprus to Chania in Greece, which has ruined the plans of least hundreds of passengers and left them disgruntled.
Ryanair has suspended a total of 34 routes on account of what it claims as a “staff holiday rostering problem.” The low-cost airline further added that it will be removing 25 of its 400 planes from operations and reduce its passenger load by two million to avoid having to make further cancellations. It even went forward to claim that as Europe’s largest airline, it had made a grievous blunder by introducing the “pilot’s annual leave” scheme, which left Ryanair with a much lesser number of pilots than were needed to operate the flights in the following weeks.
The worst part is that the news of cancellation comes after David O’Brien, Ryanair’s Chief Commercial Officer assured that Cyprus would not be affected by any of the cancellations at a press conference at a prominent hotel in Paphos.
The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has taken heed of the entire matter, and has reported that Ryanair may end up facing legal action for “persistently misleading” passengers whose flights have been cancelled due to lack of pilots to operate planes. The regulatory body claims that the airline has indeed breached several norms – legal and otherwise – by failing to inform the passengers regarding their full rights covered by the EU Flight Delay Law repeatedly.
According to the EU Flight Delay Law, any airline which cancels a flight with a notice of more than two weeks need not pay compensation, but should offer the best-possible alternative flight with another carrier for the passenger. Additionally, the cancelling airline also has to bear the cost of transfers to or from the alternative airports, as and when necessary.
Ryanair spoke on this issue, stating that it had already emailed all of the affected passengers, and gave them a minimum of five weeks’ (and a maximum of five months’) notice regarding and all changes and cancellations. It further added that the cancellations have cost Ryanair over 25 million Euros till date.