Ryanair’s boss Michael O’Leary said French President Emmanuel Macron is lying when he says there is public support for the French Government’s ban on short-haul flights, the Telegraph reported.
“Be very careful with the French,” the paper reported him saying. “You can always tell when the French are lying because their lips are moving.”
O’Leary fiery comments come in response to France announcing earlier this year a ban on short-haul flights. To cut down on CO2 emissions, the French Government will replace them with train journeys if they could be done in under two and a half hours.
According to O’Leary, the Elysee’s decision will have an impact on short-haul carriers while leave long-haul ones – including French national carrier Air France – intact.
“France is banning all domestic flights that are under 500 km – unless it is travelling on to a connecting flight through Paris Charles de Gaulle. So basically Air France will keep on flying, but everyone else will be banned,” he added.
France is not the first European country to implement a ban on short-haul flights. Austria set the same rule in November 2020, replacing all flights between Vienna and Graz with a three-hour journey.
According to an April Twitter poll made by British financial journalist Martin Lewis, 79.1 per cent of UK people would be in favour of adopting the French strategy and ban short-haul flights if a trip by train could help the country reduce its CO2 emissions.