Cancellations and staffing crises – is Ryanair losing height at last?

The quixotic Irish carrier is handling a humiliating problem badly. But it is also the largest airline in Europe, and has the resources available to put things right

Ryanair passengers unhappy with the Irish airline’s no-frills service can usually expect little sympathy, and sometimes public scorn, from its chief executive. Michael O’Leary revels in a self-drawn image as the enfant terrible of aviation, whether it’s calling passengers “stupid” or giving them short shrift if they want a refund.

However, even O’Leary was forced to apologise to customers last week after what he admitted was a “mess-up”, when a pilot rostering error led to cancellation of up to 50 flights a day over six weeks, affecting 315,000 passengers.

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