View Full Version : Ryanair pilots to fight O'Leary ban on unions

9th Feb 2004, 01:48
As reported in the Sunday Times:

RYANAIR'S pilots are attempting to break Michael O'Leary's
long-standing ban on trade unions ahead of next year's wage

If successful, the move could see the company's 93m wage bill
rocket. The move is being fiercely resisted by O'Leary, Ryanair's
chief executive.

Ryanair's near 500 pilots will renegotiate their five-year pay deal
in 2005. Informed sources say they are now examining ways of forming
a union to bargain with management.

It is understood the pilots want to change the manner in which they
are remunerated. Many favour securing bigger basic salaries instead
of share options, following the 30% collapse in the airline's share
price 10 days ago after a management profit warning.

"They want a bigger slice of the cake and share options no longer
look as attractive as they once were," said one source.

Pilots also want to abolish the practice of being moved from base to
base at the instruction of the airline. They are the biggest earners
among Ryanair's workforce and would have a strong bargaining
position but O'Leary made it clear he will not negotiate with any
trade union. "If any of our fellas aren't happy with the current
arrangement then they're free to go elsewhere," he said. "Godspeed
to them. But don't forget that SAS let 150 pilots go in the past six
months; Jetmagic in Ireland has gone bust and Flying Finn is close
to bankruptcy so there aren't a lot of airlines hiring at the

A successful move by pilots to form a trade union would encourage
other workers at the airline to follow suit and could sigificantly
inflate Ryanair's staff costs. O'Leary has rebuffed a number of
previous attempts by pilots for union recognition.

"They didn't succeed in the past and they won't succeed in the
future," he said.

Ryanair's pilots are currently represented in negotiations by
self-appointed worker representative groups in each country where
the firm has bases.

O'Leary described the share options as the "icing on the cake" for
pilots. He ruled out replacing them with bigger pay packets.

He said the pilots' options are currently worth between 150m and
200m. Many of these were awarded in the company's early years as a
public company and were valued at 1.50 and 2.50. Ryanair's share
price closed in Dublin on Friday at 5.20.

O'Leary said Ryanair's pilots were among the best paid in Europe. On
average, captains earn about 120,000 while first officers receive
between 75,000 and 80,000.

Concerns over Ryanair's staff costs were last week highlighted in a
report by Andrew Lobbenberg, the ABN Amro aviation analyst in
London. He said pilot costs would face "upward pressure" in the
future, as stock options no longer appeared as attractive to staff
and a "union organising effort" could be expected soon.

Lobbenberg estimated that Ryanair's costs will rise to 191m in
2006, driven in large part by Ryanair's aggressive expansion plans.

He currently has a "reduce" recommendation on Ryanair and a "fair
value" of 4.40 on each share.

9th Feb 2004, 03:25
O'Leary treats everyone the same. He despises both passengers and crew in equal amounts.

9th Feb 2004, 04:38
It's in the interest of all of us that negociations for pilots wages and conditions are more balanced, and bosses like O'Leary can't anymore dictate their will to the obedient employees, like it was in 19th century.

stormin norman
9th Feb 2004, 04:54
I keep reading on this site what a great airline Ryanair is.
In the last few weeks the share price has plummeted,
the wheelchair issue had to be seen to be believed,
and we had to endure o'leary on our screens bleating about this and that, and now he's telling pilots if you don't like it ,clear off.
kinda makes you glad you don't work for such a arrogant little

9th Feb 2004, 06:21
Good luck to all concerned. It's about time !

9th Feb 2004, 06:42

What a load of BLX!

9th Feb 2004, 06:42
good luck

9th Feb 2004, 07:15
So Down3greens effectively what your saying is that you don't care what happens to the T&C of other employees as long as you get your break.

You might be willing to work for nothing but some of us have mortgages to pay on our mansions aka a 2 bed flat.

Can't think of anywhere in the UK/Eire aviation seen where a pilot's union has held an airline to ransom. Airlines have certainly taken the p*ss out of their employees though.

So when the next bunch of youngsters come along and are willing to do the job for less than you're willing to do it you'll happily stand aside?

Nice to see you're a team member, your attitude will go far in the cockpit........

omoko joe
9th Feb 2004, 07:16
down3greens you point is fair based on your lack of experience in this industry. At the moment Ryanair have something you want and they will make you pay extensively for it but that doesn't matter to you right now. Eventually you will have something they want..command experience. By then you will be wanting a return on your investment. Lets reopen this thread in 5 years time and see if you've changed your mind any!:D
For now , just enjoy it.

9th Feb 2004, 11:32
Ryanair Pilots should all call sick one morning. Then MOl can see
what he wants. Get the Birds off the ground? for that he still
need Pilots or he flies them all himself. If he is able then he can
send his drivers really all in the desert. This bloke doesn`t like
to learn that a "together" is better then any conflict at all. That
expirience will cost him a lot of his so much loved "bucks" again.
I will look closely for the development there as many see Ryanair
as a example from the EU-LCC.

9th Feb 2004, 13:47
when he says 120 euro for captain i hope he means after tax !

9th Feb 2004, 15:46
O'Leary is an absolute disgrace.

If any of our fellas aren't happy with the current
arrangement then they're free to go elsewhere," he said. "Godspeed
to them. But don't forget that SAS let 150 pilots go in the past six
months; Jetmagic in Ireland has gone bust and Flying Finn is close
to bankruptcy so there aren't a lot of airlines hiring at the

So he's using the current pilot surplus to treat pilots like muck. You're even treat like dirt when you apply - you must pay a fee at a point in the application process. Isn't spending >40K on an fATPL enough, isn't it their turn to put a bit of investment into the pilot. I could go on...
He sounds like a guy "that needs to be knocked down a few notches or two." Maybe he needs to learn "treat as you would like to be treat".
I hope he chokes on his dinner.

I know where you are coming from. As a wannabe, I say that I would work for free or minimal wage to get that dream job, but so do lots of pilots when they start. However, when you're working hard for long periods of time during unsociable hours, you will start to rightfully believe, like most line pilots, that you should be rewarded for it. Your attitude will change.

9th Feb 2004, 17:51
Down3greens, would a financial analyst or an IT specialist pay to join a company and then earn nothing (or so little) for a year and then accept to be moved to here and there because (s)he has not got his word because he's bonded ?


Why do you accept such a sucking behavior and consider it as normal ???

Also, one previous post is mentionning you'll be seeing things differently 5 years down the road. I would say you'll see things differently 2 years down the road. Your analysis is not objective and that of a plane spotter standing by the airfield's fence, dwirling at each take-off he's witnessing. Once you're onboard, things will look very much different. But I understand your feelings, I used to think the very same way.

MOL's behavior is a disgrace, regardless of the industry. You simply don't act this way when ethics is somewhat an issue to you.

Last, don't compare air transport with the Coal industry. It simply is not comparable and dimolishes your image and reflexion.

9th Feb 2004, 18:19
Well, I am 200 hours flight time and also trying to do the TRSS for Ryanair.

Why am I willing to pay so much just to get that kind of job?
Just because this is the only way that people like us has to earn flight experience, earn some money and make a dream come true: fly an airplane.
Its very hard to stay at home all the day, with nowhere to work and to pay if you want to fly. At least in Ryanair you pay for your training but later one will be flying a 737 all along Europe and getting experience that may open new doors in the future.
I think this is a really good oportunity, if they treat you bad, well, all the beginnigs are difficult, that is the price that people like me has to pay. I prefer to be poorly paid, moved from one base to another at the company discrection and so on in Ryanair than experience the same flying a Seneca with 200kg overweight in newspapers like some people I know does.
Its just the point of view of each one. For an experienced pilot, is a **** of job but for a simple wannabe its just an oportunity.

Oportunities come once in the lifetime.

9th Feb 2004, 18:31
Those of us lucky enough to be in well paid and relatively secure airline positions can easily bleat about people willing to work for next to nothing and undermining the rest of us.

I worked for two years earning a pittance as a civilian flying instructor followed by a year of working for an outfit that also paid a pittance with no allowances, etc., etc., before being accepted for a major airline, funny enough during the last pilot shortage!

We can bleat all we like but I can fully understand new pilots working for nothing in order to gain the experience to enable a move on to better things. It is market forces at work pure and simple.

Historically there is nearly always a glut of pilots/new pilots and rarely a shortage. When there is a shortage it causes the likes of MOL much deserved grief.

He is exploiting the market, what should he do? Should he say 'I have more pilots than I need and people queueing up for the job but I will pay more than is necessary because I am a jolly good chap'?

Who said life was fair?

9th Feb 2004, 19:25
A lot of the new pilots of this generation don't see it quite the same way as you. This is 2004 post 9/11 and whilst a lot of you reminisce about the good old days when flying was a gentlemans club, a great profession with two sector days and fat pay checks, people from my generation have been born into a totally different world and vastly different industry.

We're not all Atlantic Barons sitting on vast wads of cash creaming it in! Most of us have our debts just like you! Flying has never been a Gentlemans club in the 6 years I've been flying with "two sector days and fat paychecks." We work hard, damn hard and don't wish to see our terms & conditions heading South.

The unions cannot be allowed to hold to ransom the airlines by encouraging militant action if their PRIVILEGED members don't get what they want, which is to the detriment of the business model and shareholders.

I don't think anyone wants to hold a company to ransom but look how O'Leary treats his workforce on the issue of a union. Employees don't wish to go back to the ways of the mill owner and his workers in the 18th century which you seem to think is the only outcome. Look how O'Leary is contemptuous of his workforce. He has a disregard for anyone but himself.

It is true you are already among the highest paid pilots in europe and the reason guys like me relish the opportunity to join Ryan is not the money as much as the career potential. you guys want to have your cake and eat it.

To my knowledge 120,000 euros a year is not that highly paid for a Captain with the amount of time put in.Why are you joining Ryanair? What long term career do you think you'll have if you wish for T&C's to continue heading down or are you there for the experience only and then going to move on? By eroding T&C's at Ryanair it'll also affect the rest of the industry, so no gain there.

What MOL said I have encoutered numerous times, as have most 21st century employees in jobs far less privileged than the ones you hold..... "If you don't want to do it their will be plenty of others willing to"

But the barriers to entry in this market are far different to the ones in most other industries. Replacing us with cheap labour is not as simple as it sounds. You know yourself the problems encountered in getting licences, rating etc. To replace all of Ryanairs pilots would be a monmumental task that would probably see Ryanair fold rather than continue. Which nobody wants.

True, unions have sent airlines under. See what the BCA did for Sabena but the BCA's attitude was far removed from BALPA's attitude.

remember this when you squabble over a few extra thousand on your already massive salary. It may serve you better to look at all the people below you with a lot less who want your jobs.

Just remember that when your a Captain servicing a large mortgage on a house with a couple of kids when some youngster says he'll do your job for less and then see how you feel.

there are loads of people on the interview jobs and sponsorship forum waiting to fill them.

And there are loads waiting to fill those shoes who don't want the T&C going down, they only want them to get better. Why sell yourself short?

"I don't care about the T&Cs of other employees as long as I get my break"

I don't quite get that Scotty as they will be the very same T&C's that I will be a part of

Well in your previous post you called us all whingers and assumed that we only flew 2 sector days for loads of money. That we should get back to reality and work harder for less money as there'd be people like you coming up behind us to to the job for less (a viscious spiral if you ask me) so naturally T&C's would go down.

People want and are happy with the share options when they're making money, if the value hadn't slipped by a third in recent weeks would this thread even exist?

Share options are fine but they aren't taken into account for mortgage purposes and aren't included in pensionable salary.

just because my outlook and perspective on this issue is different, that has nothing to do with how I perform and interact.

I disagree, you've already shown that you're perfectly willing to climb over anyone who gets in your way to achieve your goals whatever the consequences. Doesn't sound like a willing team member to me.

When you do get on the line ask the Captain that you're flying with to move over as you and your buddies are willing to do his job for less and see what his reaction is :E

The British Coal Industry died not because the workforce or product wasn't good it was because the Polish equivalent was far more financially viable. Major corporations call centres are all going to India, again, not because our workers are not professional but we are not as economically competitive. In May this year 10 eastern european countries join the EU, many of whom will have pilots that when JAA certified will be able to be more cost effective, we are all JAA, or equivalent, pilots living in an enlarging EU and we have to be able to compete to survive.

Fortunately you're not comparing like with like! Ryanair has a history of bringing people from Eastern Europe. None of these guys are working in the UK on eastern european rates. How would they survive in such an expensive country? A friends wifes sister (!!) is married to an Algerian. He told me that back in Algeria they look at the state handouts in the UK, convert them into the local currency and assume that in the UK they could live like Kings. When they get here reality sets in.

Do you think everyone in any career in the old EU is going to see there standard of living drop because workers from the east will do it for less? Or do you perhaps think CSA pilots will now say to there employer. Hey I can go and work for easyJet or Ryanair for 120,000 euros, what are you going to do to keep me? The same will go for LOT airlines and the other airlines in the new EU countries. I think the companies in the East have a lot more to worry about from integration then the companies in the West.

I hope the standard of living in the Eastern European countries will improve dramatically over time.

Best of luck getting into Ryanair and in a 3 or 4 years come back and tell us if you still think the same!!!!!

One word of advice though, don't be so vitriolic towards your future colleagues. Remember most of them have trodden the same path as you.

9th Feb 2004, 20:55
Down in 3 Greens reminds me of that controversial post (and associated letter in the log) we had from Andy Walker at LGW a few years ago.
He berated the BA pilots for enjoying a reasonable standard of living .

What a fool he made of himself.

I fear Down in 3 greens is doing the same!
Some good replies listed above from Scottie and others!

9th Feb 2004, 21:30

Despite Down3greens questionable personal ethics, he makes a good point. Any employee is only worth what their employer will pay them.

This has been discussed on earlier threads about pilot T&Cs in general, so I will try and condense for ease of reading. There are several issues pilots today need to be aware of when it comes to pay deals :

1) There is a surplus of qualified pilots.
2) This surplus is only going to get worse as more airlines go to the wall.
3) The public is unlikely to have sympathy for pilots in a strike situation.
4) None of you pilots were forced into the industry. You all chose it with eyes open.
5) Change is a fact of life in industry. You either adapt to it or you get out. Simple choice.
6) You get more than ample salaries at the moment.
7) Not many of you have nothing to fall back on in terms of education.

That said you should have the same rights and responsibilities as any company employee with regards to union association. For those in Ryanair, I would check EU law on union membership and working conditions. The key concept to check out is whether Ryanair are allowed to negotiate independently with each group of pilots in the separate bases. My understanding is that it is illegal to pay two employees, doing the same job, differently. This stands AFAIK for location, gender, race, religion etc.

Some final thoughts.
1) According to the financial press Ryanair could run passengerless for 3 years before it was in trouble. That assumes it is still flying so imagine how long it can go if it is not flying. How many Ryanair pilots could go 3 years with no sector pay?
2) What is to stop MOL simply shutting Ryanair down, taking his money and retiring. Leaving even more unemployed pilots?
3) Why not try looking for a win-win option to present MOL rather than digging heels in this early? MOL maybe an arrogant SOB but he is a successful businessman and prefers opportunities to confrontation.

Good Luck to all


9th Feb 2004, 21:36
I think that the problem with any union representation is that it is often overly heavy handed , tries to achieve unrealistic goals, and often incompetent and overpriced. The reasons for having a union are surely to level the playing field and protect the members against abuse. I can't see ryanair being unionised, and quite frankly who can blame o leary, he is protecting his interests, and the interests of the company.
The whole thing is about control.
What is the answer guys? any suggestions?

Down3greens = company spyware.

Rodquiman - surely the point of joining a company is to have a career with them, not just to gain experience so that you can leave to join another company. This kind of behavoir has resulted in bonds being increased and a general worsening of pay and conditions for those joining Ryanair.

flite idol
9th Feb 2004, 21:47
We`ve all been there, well most of us anyway. Anchored to terra firma with a freshly minted pilot license in our pocket, an airliner passes overhead in the clear blue sky and you get that twinge in the pit of your stomach, frustration has a new meaning. You feel like you would do anything to be in that cockpit! Believe me it is awesome when you finally get the opportunity but soon there after life becomes normal. The ordinary things in life become important to you again, like seeing your family.
The problem with the on going erosion to the terms and conditions of pilot employment is that the doors that you feel are being opened to you by accepting these indentured conditions will not be worth walking through once the initial euphoria fades.
The frustration you felt as a fledgling will pale in comparisen to the phone call reassigning you to a base several hundred miles from your family , for no apparent reason, with no recourse. The threat of instant dismissal if you don`t accept that duty extension, oh and by the way we are cutting your salary next month and if you don`t like it.
You WILL wish you were like your mates (if you still have any) with normal secure regular careers. I`m no big fan of unions, but if ever there was a need for one then MOL is it! Not just for the Ryan guys but for the profession as a whole.

Capt. Manuvar
9th Feb 2004, 21:57
Down3Greens and Rodquiman
As a fellow wannabe i hope i never share a cockpit or even a company with people like you. I think you have a very immature viewpoint of the airline industy and i think you need to grow up.
I know all about market forces and economics. But i think MOL is a real Pr@t. Initially I used to like him for his 'alternative' approach but eventually i saw through him. He's the type of guy who would sell his grandmother to make and extra . It's There was an article in one of the tabloids a few days ago where the reporter couldnt believe that ryanair staff have to pay for their own uniforms. It is true that the financial alarm bells are ringing at Ryanair. This is due to a flawed business model (I'm suprised they didn't blame Sept. 11 this time). The people who should take the punishment for this are MOL and this cronies at the top not the pilots and other hardworking members of staff. Aren't these the same pilots who have to taxi at 50kts:} to the stand so that MOL can go ranting in the media about how his airline is always on time.
Unlike most wannabes i like to think about my long term future and not just the immediate. i want to be able to pay my kids university tuition fees, get unto the property ladder, pay off my existing debts and support myself after retirement cos state pensions aint no good. at the moment Ryanair is no.200 on my list of 200 airlines to work for and is about to replaced by air Kabul:}
they shouldn't be expecting 150 from this side in the near future.
Capt. manuvar requesting freq. change

Rocco in Budapest
9th Feb 2004, 23:30
All for the union! Hopefully, well see this thing go all the way and not just a mere threat.

"Down3Greens. just take care of the paperwork today. My controls"

10th Feb 2004, 00:06
Good luck to all the guys and gals at Ryanair. I know several people flying for Ryanair and wish them all the best. I hope that they pull this off.


:ok: :ok: :ok:

10th Feb 2004, 00:42
Downthreegreens wrote;

Oh dear Shuttleworth................. when have I once breated them for the standard of living they enjoy.

erm try;

An interesting article to which I am going to give you whingers a different perspective and something to think about.


This is 2004 post 9/11 and whilst a lot of you reminisce about the good old days when flying was a gentlemans club, a great profession with two sector days and fat pay checks, people from my generation have been born into a totally different world and vastly different industry.


you guys want to have your cake and eat it.


remember this when you squabble over a few extra thousand on your already massive salary

Implication being that we're;

a/ moaners
b/ overpaid
c/ lazy
d/ greedy

The T&Cs being referred to over and over again in such a negative manner (as if they are not good enough), include unrivalled sector pay, a high level of overall renumeration, fixed roster stabilty, inflationary rise, share options (that everybody loved in the good times).

Downthreegreens then goes on to say;

It may be human nature to want to improve our lots and better our conditions, but is also corporate nature to shave pounds off the bottom line and to say NO in a pilot surplus market.

So renegotiations are coming up, shares have taken a dive, an EU ruling has gone against Ryanair who now says fares will have to rise and LCC's are cutting there costs to stay competitive.

Now tell me if you don't have a united workforce where would you look at cutting costs???? :confused:

Tis better to be proactive rather than reactive :ok:

Hence the need for a union :ok:

10th Feb 2004, 00:50
I am a wannabe also but Down3greens ........ you are way out of line here. It is "yes men" like you that see any industry, not just the Airline industry into the grave. We pay incredibly to get our licenses and we deserve an appropriate set of benefits afterwards.

I wish I could wish you luck but I just can't bring myself to do so. You have already said you would cut my throat (or any wannabe's) just to get in before me.

10th Feb 2004, 01:16

Some interesting points and don't think anyone could disagree with your main point regarding what an employee is worth.

However :}

There is a surplus of qualified pilots.

Hmm, yes there is a surplus of pilots who can be put into the RHS as co-pilots but I dispute there is a surplus of people for the LHS as my company is finding it very difficult to get people to sit there.

This surplus is only going to get worse as more airlines go to the wall

Have to dispute this too :E I think the industry is through the worst of it. Yes there will be lay offs but it isn't just the LoCo's who will be expanding in the near future. Lot's of seats will need filled :ok: :ok:

The public is unlikely to have sympathy for pilots in a strike situation.

I always think this is a spurious arguement. A strike is between the company and the pilots. Anyway who is talking about a strike?

None of you pilots were forced into the industry. You all chose it with eyes open

Your point is? :confused: That we lay over with a jar of vaseline?

Change is a fact of life in industry. You either adapt to it or you get out. Simple choice.

Totally agree with you. Look how the industry is changing. Most of us work our maximum of 900 hours a year.

You get more than ample salaries at the moment.

You let your guard down here :p Now we see where you're coming from :(

But I'll ask the question, ample to what? A salesman like yourself? A mate who was a salesman has retired at 32. I don't begrudge him his worth, fair play to him :ok:

Not many of you have nothing to fall back on in terms of education.

Can't speak for anyone else but I have a BSc (Hons). Could do an MSc if I needed to.

According to the financial press Ryanair could run passengerless for 3 years before it was in trouble. That assumes it is still flying so imagine how long it can go if it is not flying. How many Ryanair pilots could go 3 years with no sector pay?

I assume you're talking about industrial action here which no one else has talked about but let's just suppose it did happen.... Perhaps it could run for a few years but would institutions and shareholders etc want that? Share price plummet, money wasted etc

What is to stop MOL simply shutting Ryanair down, taking his money and retiring. Leaving even more unemployed pilots?

There is everything to stop MOL shutting Ryanair down. Shareholders for a start. However I'm surprised MOL hasn't walked with his money as I certainly would :}

Why not try looking for a win-win option to present MOL rather than digging heels in this early? MOL maybe an arrogant SOB but he is a successful businessman and prefers opportunities to confrontation.

Totally agree with you, which is why I can't understand MOL's attitude towards a union :ok: Pilot's also prefer opportunities to confrontation and a union is a unifying voice with a bit of clout to make themselves heard. Then things might be a bit more even and a win-win situtation develops. Afterall pilots don't want to be out of a job but neither do they want to be shafted.

10th Feb 2004, 01:49
A while ago BALPA negotiated a pay deal that did not go down well with a large number of my colleagues and yet the general concensus of opinion is that union membership is worthwhile as a backup insurance policy. A number of pilots have managed to find themselves in sticky situations that the media have taken an interest in in recent years, some got themselves into the schtick, and others found themselves unwittingly in the middle of their worst nightmare. Union members had immediate access to an advisor and representitive who was knowledgable about the airline industry.

Unions provide much more than just payrises. A boss who refuses to allow them in his company knows he can shaft his employees as much as he wants, and get away with it. MOL is taking advantage of this situation right now in Ryanair.

D3G. You idiot. How old are you? One day you will look back at the way you threw yourself at a mad boss and said you would be happy to be treated like a work experience boy and wonder what you were doing. All I can say is give up all hope of ever owning a house and having a family because with the attitude you have at the moment you will never be able to afford it. If you work for next to nothing now you with just be another plonker paving the way to a situation where all pilots work for free and just for the love of it. And frankly, that's just not professional.

rookie skypilot
10th Feb 2004, 06:03
I wish you luck, 'cos you'll need it when you find yourself diverting because of marginal conditions, and MOL calls you in to give you a bollicking: "How come four others made it in, and you didn't?".
Maybe unions are not just for pushing up salaries. They might protect you from being fired for making the right decision for your pax. and a/c safety.

10th Feb 2004, 06:24
D3G, I wholly assure you that you honestly have no idea what you are talking about.

What is more likely, after many years in this business, is the wholesome knowledge that it is idealists like you who will be at the forefront of BALPA in the future. Once you've had all that trust abused one too many times you WILL crack and see the roses, I can absolutely guarantee, and when you do the strength of your convictions now, allied to the ruefullness you will feel when you finally realise how naive you have been, will drive you to be a full and wholehearted player in the pilots union.

In the meantime, those of us who have spent a decade or more flying can only shake our heads at your views and think knowingly.......time will tell. It always does. Best of luck with your career meanwhile.

10th Feb 2004, 19:34
just wanted to pick up on something mentioned by D3G.

'whinging and slagging off their employer because they can't get more'

It's not realy a case of getting more, it's a case of avoiding getting less. Avoiding getting longer rosters, that start earlier and end later, it's avoiding each batch of new recruits getting progressively worse 't&c'. It's about being able to have a voice in the company that will be listened to without the threat of management being heavy handed.

I think MOL has got lots of things right, but at the same time he has got somethings wrong. There has to be a balance between profit and fair treatment of employees.

11th Feb 2004, 03:24
<Winds neck out>

Will this impending episode coupled with the recent court ruling finally show the travelling public that air travel is an undeniably expensive commodity?

It seems to be proving that Ryanair's business model is in fact not "revolutionary", more's the case it is reliant on a series of temporary arrangements to which will eventually be called a halt.

I would imagine that if BA we allowed to charge crew for their own uniforms, then deny them the right to industrial representation, fly to out-of-the-way airports and receive backhanders for doing so, they too would be able to charge the consumer ridiculously low fares (and turn a massive profit in the bargain). if this is the case, then BA and Ryanair are identical in terms of business model (apart from BA providing better service).

Force Ryanair to pay back the backhanders, introduce unions, fly to major airports and they'll be the same as BA.

Personally, that leads me to invest in BA rather than Ryanair.

<Winds neck in.>

11th Feb 2004, 05:01
A whimsical aside -

Doesn't this thread show that the Ryanair model is flawed, as is 'pure' BA?

The guys that have got it right are easyJet. They keep costs to a minimum but recognise that they have to retain customer loyalty. They fly to and from major airports. They have avoided the PR elephant traps that Ryanair seem to keep finding. They are profitable, growing, and seem to be professionally managed.
Don't know about their T&Cs and I gather they are having some difficulties recruiting and retaining. But if that's their only problem, it's solvable.

On the other hand, BA is still over-staffed and contains many practices that reflect its state-owned, unionised past. Its fares are generally too high and it isn't profitable on short-haul.

Ryanair seem intent on shafting everyone, and sooner or later that approach backfires. I'm no fan of trades unions, and in Ryanair the motor for a change in attitude will be the financial crunch that's on its way and not any union....

11th Feb 2004, 06:00
All carriers are becoming locost carriers, at least that is the message that most airlines are trying to get across in their advertising. BA, bmi, bmi baby, Flybe, Easyjet are ALL trying to get the same message across, that somehow if you fly with them you can get cheap fares. But advertising is all it is, the reality with all the airlines is VERY different. But, joe public has heard that locost is good, so many times, that they are starting to believe it, even though the opposite is probably nearer to the truth. Companies like bmi and BA are running at a loss and will continue to do so for as long as the shareholders / owners allow it to continue. In the long term they have to change to survive, this is as inevitable as the Titanic sinking. Anyone care to speculate as to which of the mainstream airlines will be around in 5 years time? I would not like to call that one !

11th Feb 2004, 18:04
From what I hear from friends working with Ryanair a union will be very much necessary. The advertised promisses like share options, fixed days off, great pay etc...all a bit like big mouthed words.
No captain nor any type rated first officer can join Ryanair, all have to accept an agency contract. These contracts are subject to "take-it-or leave" Ryanair changes.
There is no minimum guaranteed....think about the guys and girls who just fly 1 or 2 days at present. And...ask them if anyone can remember when the salary was last paid on time...