Ryanair will reduce its flight capacity by 20% during the months of September and October as forward bookings have notably weakened over the past 10 days, given uncertainty over recent Covid-19 case rates in some EU countries, and has called on the Government to add EU countries with lower rates to the Green List without delay.
Ryanair confirmed that most of the cuts would be frequency reductions rather than route closures, and they will be heavily focused on those countries such as Spain, France and Sweden, where rising recent Covid-19 case rates have led to increased travel restrictions, and also Ireland, which “continues to impose a uniquely restrictive Green List” that includes 14-day ‘quarantines’ on visitors from most other EU countries such as Germany (16.3) and the UK (18.6), even though they have lower Covid-19 case rates over the last 14 days than Ireland (22.1).
A spokesperson for Ryanair said: “Any affected passengers in September and October have received email notification advising them of their options. Over the past two weeks as a number of EU countries have raised travel restrictions, forward bookings especially for business travel into September and October have been negatively affected, and it makes sense to reduce frequencies so that we tailor our capacity to demand over the next two months.
“Ireland’s isolationist Green List has failed to prevent this recent rise in Covid-19 case rates, despite Ireland having the most restrictive travel quarantine of any EU country since 1 July last. This is in marked contrast to the performance of Italy, where the 14-day Covid-19 case rate is less than half of Ireland’s, despite the fact that Italy has been open to EU travel and tourism since 1 July. Proper testing at airports and effective tracing (as is being conducted in Germany and Italy) is the only realistic and proportionate method of supervising safe intra-EU travel while effectively limiting the spread of the Covid-19 virus.”