Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary vows to keep raising bag charges and warns charging for hand luggage 'inevitable'

Ryanair is on the case to put off all of its passengers from checking in bags. Outspoken boss Michael O’Leary today vowed th

e firm would rais

e luggage charges so high that no one would be prepared to pay them. Between June and September, Ryanair’s lowest charge for a checked-in bag is 25 – 10 more than in the off-season. Mr O’Leary, speaking at a news conference in London, revealed he plans to introduce this 10 increase all year round. He said the firm’s fees had reduced the number of passeng

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s checking in bags from 80% to 20%, saving the airline “a fortune”. The chief executive said: “We will keep increasing until we get rid of the bags. Carrying a bag costs me money.” He also joked: “The husbands of the world have united to fund a statue to me because I have relieved them of having to persuade their wives to take less luggage when they are going on holiday.” Mr O’Leary also warned it was “inevitable” that budget airlines would start charging for hand luggage too. Ryanair has been slammed in the past for increasing fees for putting bags in the plane’s hold in the peak summer months. The charge, for the

first bag weighing-up to 15kg, has leapt 10 to 25 per person each way from the start of June to the end of September, if booked in advance. On popular routes to the Canary Islands an

d Greece it has jumped by 10 to 35 per bag, or to 45 for bags weighing up to 20kg. But the fees are even

more eye-watering if passengers pay the charge at the airport, when it soars from 60 to 100 for the first bag, and as much as 160 for a second bag on some flights. Ryanair say the charges have reduced the proportion of passengers checking-in bags from 80% to 20%. Mr O’Leary wants to cut that to 10% to reduce costs, by making a 10 increa

se permanent. Talking about his wife, he said: “Even Mrs O’Leary now travels with the one 10kg carry on bag. “We no longer wait at check-in desks and no longer have to hang around at baggage carousels. It’s brilliant.” Mr O’Leary hit out at criticism of the airline: “We don’t force people to fly on Ryanair, they choose to fly on Ryanair.” An increase in fees for changing flight plans - which has risen by 10 to 40 per person on most routes in the peak summer months - could also be made permanent, he said. Asked whether Ryanair would charge for carry on luggage, O’Leary said: “I think it is unlikely in the short term but it is probably inevitable over the longer time.” The maverick boss also used a press conference to unveil new routes to hit out at regulators, branding as “discredited and corrupt” a probe by the C

ompetition Commission into its stake in rival Irish airline Aer Lingus. He also dismissed a commission investigating future airport growth in London as “an irrelevance.”

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