Ryanair’s boss has declared the low-cost airline has a duty to operate in Ukraine and will continue to fly as long as “there is no war or missiles flying there”.
“We see no reason not to continue those flights until we are told by European authorities that it is not safe to fly,” he said during a press conference in Lisbon. “It is important not to panic. People need to get home and people want to leave and fly abroad to the EU … airlines have to provide that service.”
The carrier announced in January it would open a few bases in the country if Russia decided to desist from invading.
“We remain committed to Ukraine. As long as Ukraine is looking westward there are huge flows of people travelling to and from Ukraine working in central and eastern Europe,” he said on 31 January.
“If it is not invaded by Russia, it is a country where we would expect to open a couple of bases some time in the next two or three years subject to agreements on costs. We hope the situation in Ukraine gets resolved diplomatically. And if it is, it remains a very exciting growth opportunity for us.”
Ryanair is not the only operator to have kept operations going.
On Monday, Wizz Air announced it had not made any changes to its Ukraine schedule, leaving flights to operate as normal, Reuters reported.
“Currently, we have not made any changes to our schedule and all of our flights to/from Ukraine continue to operate as normal,” the company said in a statement. “All passengers with booked flights to and from Ukraine are advised to regularly check their mailboxes for further information about booked flights.”