Ryanair has announced that it is cancelling thousands more flights, with up to around 400,000 passengers likely to be affected.
The airline is also offering 315,000 customers who have already been affected a travel voucher worth up to €80 for each trip cancelled because of its pilot shortage crisis.
It made the announcement while confirming plans to suspend 34 of its routes over the November-March winter season to prevent any further mass cancellations.
More than 2,000 flights to the end of October were abruptly axed earlier this month because of the “mess-up” over pilots’ leave.
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Ryanair said on Wednesday that three UK domestic services would be included in the new list of cuts – Gatwick to Belfast, Stansted to Glasgow and Stansted to Edinburgh.
It said that by operating 25 fewer aircraft over the winter it could deploy the flight crews to more popular services.
The no-frills carrier also signalled that it would no longer require its pilots to give up a week of their leave.
Michael O’ Leary also sought to defuse frosty relations in an email to passengers, saying the voucher offer is the airline’s way of apologising “for the disruption we caused”.
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It is worth up to €80 for a return trip though the terms and conditions reportedly limit availability.
According to the Independent, the vouchers must be redeemed by the end of next month, with flights to be taken by 20 March.
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The major disappointment for passengers is likely to be that – as well as Easter – the Christmas holidays are not covered by the vouchers because festive services between 20 December and 7 January are excluded.
Another condition which the airline is yet to confirm to Sky News is that infants are not eligible.
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The gesture also raises the prospect of substantially increasing Ryanair’s original €25m (£22.2m) cost estimate for the pilot rota blunder.
That is because the vouchers are in addition to its statutory compensation obligations but much will depend on how many customers choose to use them.
The pilot shortage has been a PR disaster for Ryanair amid its Always Getting Better drive to improve customer satisfaction since 2014.
During a shareholders’ meeting last Thursday, Mr O’Leary said the firm planned to recruit 120 new pilots within “the next week or two” to help avert the prospect of a fresh wave of cancellations.
The airline confirmed on Wednesday that the suspension of 34 of its 1,800 routes would affect three UK domestic services in Gatwick to Beflast, Stansted to Edinburgh and Stansted to Glasgow.