Ryanair has hit out over air traffic control (ATC) strikes once again, saying they proved particularly turbulent last month.
The airline still managed to post a seven per cent rise in passenger numbers for June – up to 12.6m, compared to the same month last year. The load factor, which reflects how efficiently an airline is filling its planes, remained unchanged at 96 per cent.
The Irish carrier said air traffic control strikes and staff shortages had proved a particular headache over the month, with over 1,100 flight cancellations compared to just 41 for the same time last year.
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Ryanair’s chief marketing officer Kenny Jacobs reiterated the airline’s calls for the European Commission to take “urgent action” to help tackle disruption from strikes.
He said: “Ryanair’s June traffic grew by seven per cent to 12.6m customers, while our load factor remained strong at 96 per cent, on the back of lower fares.”
Regrettably over 210,000 Ryanair customers had their flights cancelled in June because of four weekends of ATC strikes and repeated UK, German and French ATC staff shortages.
Ryanair calls for urgent action by the EU Commission and European governments to ameliorate the effect of ATC strikes and staff shortages in the UK, Germany and France from disrupting the travel plans of millions of Europe’s consumers this summer.
Last month, Ryanair teamed up with British Airways owner IAG against the French government over strikes taking an “unacceptable” toll on passengers. At a press conference in June, the carriers said they were submitting a joint complaint to the European Commission saying the rights of passengers needed to be respected and upheld.
IAG chief executive Willie Walsh said the strikes, which have taken place over French President Emmanuel Macron’s labour reforms, were the “biggest challenge facing our industry”.
Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary has said there needed to be “decisive action” to ensure that ATC providers could cope in the event of national strikes.
Read more: Ryanair calls for urgent action to prevent strikes causing summer meltdown