View Full Version : Ryanair wants compensation from NATS

Electric Sky
24th May 2002, 15:08
Interesting as most of Ryanair's competitors would be on the receiving end of any claim it makes.

Ryanair demands Nats compensates for delays

Andrew Clark
Friday May 24, 2002
The Guardian

"Ryanair has written to the transport secretary, Stephen Byers, demanding compensation for air traffic control problems which have forced it to cancel dozens of flights.

The Irish airline has lost patience with national air traffic control services following a software problem on Friday which caused widespread disruption at airports.

Ryanair said the incident, the fifth glitch this year, caused it to cancel 51 of its 314 scheduled flights. It says 7,000 of its customers were unable to travel and a further 25,000 suffered delays of up to four hours.

It wants Mr Byers to force Nats to refund fares amounting to around 350,000. Ryanair is the first airline to break ranks by openly criticising Nats.

Friday's disruption was caused by an overnight software update which went wrong at Nats' new Swanwick control centre in Hampshire.

The marketing director, Tim Jeans, said: "This was a poor management decision and they lacked any backup. It was frankly incompetent to do it on a Thursday night, prior to the busiest day of the week."

Ryanair is the second largest carrier in passenger terms at Britain's airports, behind British Airways. Most UK airlines, including BA, BMI British Midland and EasyJet, are in a consortium which bought a 46% stake in Nats in a part-privatisation last year and so are reluctant to criticise Nats.

There was no comment from the Department for Transport last night. Nats referred inquiries to the government."

ES ;)

24th May 2002, 15:24
I wonder if NATS will charge them 50 per application for compensation? :D :D :D :D

24th May 2002, 15:39
and 150 to talk to them about it ;)

But as our go captain said on the way back last friday

"We're still flying. Some of the others [ryanair] from stansted have been cancelling flights"

Curious Pax
24th May 2002, 15:46
Hmmmm (ref some recent Ryanair threads):

NATS causes Ryanair flight cancellations - Ryanair wants compensation (so they can compensate their affected passengers? - Thought not.).

Ryanair causes Ryanair flight cancellations, do the pax get compensation? Thought not.

Go figure......

no sig
24th May 2002, 15:47
Steady on lads, this NATS failure cost RyanAir and the other carriers big time, not to mention the untold misery to the travelling public. They have a right to be angry and to seek compensation.

24th May 2002, 16:32
Hold on; don't you normally get compensation when a product or service you've already paid for is unsatisfactory ?

Ryanair gets charged for NATS services after they have used them.

If Ryanair doesn't fly, it doesn't pay for the service.

Ergo, how can you claim compensation for something you haven't had ?!

I think, if the tables were turned, that's the kind of answer O'L would give :cool:

no sig
24th May 2002, 21:02
And we'd all be out of a job then!

24th May 2002, 22:32
Lets face it guys...you are all upset because..."Ryanair is the wave of the future"...not the sordid past. Low cost services (Southwest style) are going to succeed in Europe (and the UK) because (what a novel idea)...thats what the punters want...simple as that.
And as for charging to apply...double up would be a better idea.
Sim check? Cash on the barrelhead...or NO job. More power to 'em !!:D

25th May 2002, 00:29
No, 411A, yet again you are wrong, on several counts:- Ryanair's operation bears no similarity whatsoever to Southwest. Low-cost carriers are not "the wave of the future" either, except possibly on short-haul services. IT and long-haul are very different markets. Most people with whom I have talked hate everything that Ryanair stands for not because it is a low-cost carrier, but because it treats everyone - staff, passengers, suppliers - like dirt. The only thing that they want out of anyone is MONEY. I have nothing whatsoever against low-cost carriers. If Go/easyJet or Buzz were to offer me a job tomorrow, I'd snap their hands off in my enthusiasm.Furthermore, when the industry recovers (as it will, in the cyclical nature of the industry) the boot will be on the other foot. And it will be planted where many, many pilots are dying to apply it - bend over please, Mr. O'Leary! Well, why not? He has demonstrated time and again that he has no loyalty whatsoever to his staff - why should they feel any loyalty to him? Anyone with half a qualification (for which they will have paid) will be up and out first chance they get. And good luck to them.

25th May 2002, 01:49
In the meantime, they absolutely lap up the gravy.
Suspect that Ryanair's type of operation will change the face of European aviation permanently. And well it should....the very high cost of flying in Europe is a disgrace. They will never run out of pax because...most vote with their wallets.

25th May 2002, 06:55
411A - some of what you say is quite true. That is that the cost of flying in Europe has, until recently, indeed been absurdly high. Passengers will certainly 'vote with their wallets' - as I did when I stopped flying Lufthansa and switched to buzz. 80 more for a free drink and a Lufthansakaesebroetchen was just ridiculous! LH switched from A300-600 to smaller ac on the LHR-FRA route, hence there were fewer 'baragin seats' available - but STN-FRA with buzz was much cheaper, you buy a drink if you want one (except when they offload the bar....) and it's a very happy operation compared to the rather impersonal LH.

I've no experience of Easyjet or RyanAir - except for conversations with Easyjet's chief operations manager. Yes, they operate an efficient and popular service and have a loyal and mostly happy team - with a charismatic and genial boss. But that may not be true of other low-cost airlines........

Good luck to Easyjet,buzz, bmibaby, Go(ne) et al. - you've made air travel available to many thankful passengers.

Electric Sky
25th May 2002, 07:19
Lets keep it real guys. Yes Ryanair don't sound like the best to work our butts off for (I have never worked for them so I am going by what i read) but they are here to stay for the forseeable future and much as they may be disliked by many they are keeping lots of us employed and getting lots of pax from A to B on valuable fares.

As for claiming compensation from NATS, technically yes they have paid for a product that they haven't received but the implications of a claim are far reaching. The major UK airlines that bought into NATS obviously would be foolish to make a claim. Yet their biggest rivals have every right to and probably will. This means that every carrier that had to cancel a flight operating to the UK on that Friday can claim against NATS (aka BA,bmi,Easyjet,Britannia etc etc...) :eek:

For whatever reasons (privatisation!!), NATS is in a mess and it's only the controllers that run it that make it work as well as it does. It needs to be sorted out once and for all!

ES ;)

25th May 2002, 07:28

What planet do you live on? Just wondering....

25th May 2002, 07:54
Finally someone has the balls to stand up and critizise a malfunctioning system.

If you buy hundreds of Boeings you want to see them in the air where they are generating profits.

Like one reply said " if you don't fly you don't pay for the Air Traffic service"!!

What a stupid response! It's like being served a bad meal at the restaurant and when complaining the response would be: You only pay for what you eat.....

Happiness is a black ECAM

25th May 2002, 08:41
I think we are overburdening the system, always eating in to the outer edges of the safety envelope. If ATC is so busy that I cannot start my R/T with a "Goodmorning, sir", there must be something wrong. And that something wrong is the overstretching of a system that in essence should have big buffers at each end to avoid the worst...

Although they "may" make business sense, these high-density low-cost operations are eating away at the soul of what aviation should be.

So now, will ATC charge us if we get a readback wrong, or if we go-around after a botched up approach, or if we fail to take the first hi-speed turn on landing...? Probably the guys at Ryanair would just forward the invoice to the crew!

I think MOL and his like should leave aviation business to gentlemen (and ladies of course) and go make his $$$ somewhere else before he gives us all a bad name in a big way when the bubble finally bursts.

Written today, the 25 of May, 2002 A.D.

25th May 2002, 09:15

The comment was made very tongue in cheek as the kind of response MOL might have issued had the roles been reversed and someone was claiming compensation from RYR for something..... Irony, geddit ?! :rolleyes:


25th May 2002, 11:12

And I want compensation from Ryanair. 50!!!!

:eek: :mad: :cool:

25th May 2002, 13:38
"Ryanair 123 enter the hold at FL240. Everyone else, you are cleared to self position left base R/W 23 call finals.
Ryanair 321, I say again, standby you have a slot delay call me back in 40 minutes due airfield congestion."


25th May 2002, 14:57
I think it is fantastic! About time some managers running Govt. services pretending they are 'businesses' got a taste of what the real business world is actually like.:cool:

25th May 2002, 15:33
Ryanair doing this will cost NATS money, will this not be a good incentive for NATS to get the problems sorted ? If it costs them nothing to have problems why would they spend money fixing them ?

25th May 2002, 17:57
It's about time that MOL learned what business is about. He should be provided with the service (or not) he is willing to pay for.

Don't want to pay up for enhancing airspace control? Well, let's start selling AIRSPACE slots to the highest bidder...... Guess who will start crying again.....

26th May 2002, 18:44
320driver has a point:
most airlines - including Ryanair have been growing dramatically over the past 8 -10 years.
Now, as the system is working on the edge, the fastest growing start crying.

26th May 2002, 21:23
It is an interesting topic. NATS do have an obligation to provide a service. However, its a bit like railtrack's decision to close the West Coast mainline every weekend between now an Christmas near Milton Keynes - will Virgin trains get compensation? -I doubt it. All part of the UKs crumbling transport infrastructure.

Perhaps next time the French, Italians, or Spanish go on strike we can claim compensation too?

Whilst NATS is semi-privatised, it is still the Government who control UK airspace through ICAO standards. MOL certainly shouldn't, and won't get any compensation, but I can see where he's coming from in a way. I really hope Swanwick and NATS gets sorted out for everyone's sake. We have the best air traffic controllers in the world, just give them the tools to do their job.

26th May 2002, 21:32
Ryanair have been quite rightly slagged off here for their tacky behaviour -like charging for an interview...but they are right to be hammering the government on this. The airlines pay top dollar for air traffic services. If they are not provided, the government should cough up.

26th May 2002, 22:24
........why bother? Ryanair will hardly compensate their passengers for the cancelled flights.

27th May 2002, 19:32
Just to point out, yes NATS caused delays during the morning, but the recovery was hindered when the CFMU slot allocator also failed in the early afternoon. Surely if someone wants compensation, they should go after it from Brussels too. The second failure probably cost more money anyhow, aiding the CLN overload of around 20 Standsted inbounds within 10 mins, resulting in lots of holding therefore fuelburn. As stated, pax won't see anything for cancelled flights, and at least an aircraft on stand aint got its engines on full tilt.

Should Ryanair succeed, surely this could open the floodgates for sueing more widespread, ie. Burger King for burning down part of Heathrow Terminal 'whichever', or Virgin for closing 27R for a few days after the gear failure.........the list goes on....

Send Clowns
27th May 2002, 20:42
A bunch of British airlines were bullied into buying half of NATS in a half-****d government sell-off, with a threat that it would go elsewhere and out of aviation-sector control if not. I didn't see any contribution from Ryanair in this investment. The whole company is no doing well, so is costing BA, bmi etc money. Why should Ryan whinge?

27th May 2002, 20:49
How about Ryanair supplying NATS with a list of the names and addresses of all the passengers affected so they can be refunded directly, missing out the middleman MOL, of course Ryanair will pass on a small sum for the fuel and landing charges they saved as well.....:D

28th May 2002, 10:36
How about all the other airlines suing Ryanair for the delays they cause by failing to cancel their flight plans and clogging up the system with 'slotted' departures that another company could be allocated.