Chief Executive Statement and company commitments showed that the priority of the company was to focus on customer’s needs and low price fares. Besides that the company stated they would improve their service and offer the best possible value for customer’s money. "We will continue to lower fares to maintain our traffic growth and high load factors. " (Michael O'Leary, Chief Executive Ryanair, 2010) 1. Macro Environmental Analysis The following studies were based from online articles, Airline Post (2009-2010), Ryanair
Ryanair has been known for its cost saving in nearly every area. They offered customers the cheapest possible prices for flights but their vision of saving as much as possible has cost them their ethical reputation. Their cost strategy had been so important that they could have put their passenger’s safety at risk. In August 2009 according to allegations from Spanish aviation professionals and a Sunday Times report, Ryanair had been refuelling its aircraft with the minimum amount of fuel needed.
Another investigation had been made in September 2010 on the flight from Dublin to London when nine oxygen masks failed to deploy and the cabin crew had to bang on the cockpit to make them come out. Ryanair has been investigated by Air Accident Investigation Unit. Facts above confirm that the safety of customers has been less important to Ryanair than company profit. Ryanir’s reputation has not only been damaged because of their lack of responsibility regarding the safety of their customers, their fee charges have been another disappointment for customers.
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Ryanair has promised to deliver the lowest price as stated on their website, “Ryanair will continuously offer the lowest available prices to all our passengers, on all routes on which we operate, regardless of which other airlines compete with us on those routes” (online, Ryanair, Passanger Charter, 2010) but passengers were angry when they found during their ticket booking process that luggage fees, check-in fees and charges for payment by debit/credit card were not included in the price of the ticket advertised.
The baggage fee has been one of the main issues for customers who travelled with Ryanair. In September 2009 the company increased their fees from ? 10 to ? 15 for check-in of a bag online, and ? 30 instead of ? 20 for check-in of a bag at the airport. A spokesperson of the company said “These baggage fees are all avoidable by all passengers who choose to travel with carry-on luggage only. Over 70 per cent of Ryanair passengers will be totally unaffected by these changes as they already travel with just one carry-on bag, which is free of charge” (online, Airline Post, 10th September, 2009)
This was another example of how the company did not think too much about their customer, especially families. It would be hard to imagine a family with children/teenagers going on holiday with carry-on luggage only to avoid the extra payment for baggage as stated in the statement above. The unethical face and ridiculous company rules with regards to baggage is clearly shown on a video (http://www. ihateryanair. org/ryanair-demonstration-on-how-to-publicly-humiliate-passengers/) on the website “I hate Ryanair” which has been in operation since October 2008 with a related Twitter feed, which stated
“Many people have been badly treated by Ryanair and shafted for hidden fees etc. We have too. This is why we decided to set up this website as means of expressing our general disgust” (online, I Hate Ryanair, About blog, 1st January, 2011) The video showed a group of young ladies unpacking as much of their luggage as possible and dressing themselves with as many layers of clothing from their luggage just so their bags would fit in the carry-on luggage “sizing” contraption.
This incident demonstrated how Ryanair publicly humiliates passengers and how much they mean to the company. Some customers have not been so lucky and they had to pay the fees for their oversized carry-on luggage. “I was flying on Ryanair last week and they made me pay an extra € 35 because the wheels of my carrier bag wouldn’t fit in that yellow form that your bag is supposed to fit in. ”(online, I hate Ryanair, Paula, 12th November, 2009) A charge of ? 1 for the use of on-board toilets has been explored and it could be the most outrageous fee by the company.
(Ryanair fees Appendix 1) In October 2009 Ryanair removed all of its airport check-in desks and customers had to check-in online on Ryanair’s website 15 days prior to their scheduled flight or at least 4 hours before the trip. According to a Ryanair spokesperson; “This new rule has been applied in an effort to improve passengers’ experience at the airport, thus reducing queues, and to continue to offer low prices on their tickets” (online, Airline Post, 29th September, 2009)
This statement was misleading, as by removing their check in desks from airport might of reduced queues but it added to the extra expense of travel fees for customers therefore increased company profit. (Year results Appendix 1) These actions saved the airline money and left customers to pay nearly all their expenses. The company continued to make their statements sound as if they cared for their customers. “For our customers, Ryanair is committed to fulfilling their needs in an honest and fair manner.
The Company is committed to generating sales through price, quality and the ability to fulfil commitment”. (online, Ryaniar, Investor Day, 29th September, 2009) The words “fair manner” as stated in the statement above was deceptive because otherwise they would not have charged more for their drinks as according to the survey by Nofly Ryanair charged as much as 50% more for a bottle of w ine, 35% more for a cup of coffee or tea and 30% more for its sandwiches than rival airlines (Bmi, Flybe, Monarch Airlines, Easyjet).
(online, Airline Post, 23th September, 2009) Passengers were not the only ones that had been treated badly by the company, their employees had also been victims of the company’s arrogance and carelessness. Transport Workers' Federation has set up a website www. ryan-be-fair. org to offer the staff of the strong anti-union airline the freedom to discuss their work, conditions and any problems they may have. According to the federation they have received a lot of comments from cabin crews and pilots on how they have been treated by their employers.
Some of the comments from their website showed how much the company cared about their employees; "Ryanair does not care about its cabin crew and just takes the most they possibly can squeeze out of us. After a twelve hour day without a break, I don’t have the energy to be nice to passengers or check that my nail polish is still on. Come on Ryanair start valuing what we do because without us you could not fly". (online, Ryan-be-fair, Cabin Crew, UK, 2010) "I really hope for Ryanair and all my cabin crew colleagues that everything will become good for us.
I really want to leave the company to go for a longhaul company which has better contracts and a safe system that includes insurance, pension, etc. Ryanair is abusing us the same way they abuse their passengers. I feel so guilty to be forced to be one of the executors that are ripping off the passengers' money every day! Please help us! " (online, Ryan-be-fair, employee, Germany,2010) Ryanair boss Michael O’Leray described the site as “generally just fiction” while the company's director of personnel, Eddie Wilson, described it as “an irrelevance to Ryanair” and "nothing but an empty vessel making more noise".
(online, management issues, 2005) The statement above showed the clear arrogance of Ryanair and their appreciation of their employees when the personal director described the comments and views of their employees as “irrelevant” to the company. In a survey according to Geneva-based Covalence which has released a ranking of 581 companies based on ethical issues like corporate social responsibility, environmental performance and information provided to customers Ryanair ranked as the 575th on the list (list of the best and worst Appendix 3) which was a severe blow to the company’s reputation. (online, Airline Post, 3rd February, 2010)
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