Thursday 6 August 2020 11:58 am

Ryanair increases services to 60 per cent of pre-Covid levels in August

Budget carrier Ryanair today said that it had successfully increased its flight schedule to over 60 per cent of pre-Covid levels as passenger numbers continue to grow after lockdown.

Having restarted its services in June, the Irish airline said that it would fly 11,000 flights a week throughout the month, over 1,600 routes.

Read more: Lufthansa posts worst loss in history amid warnings of prolonged air travel slump

In September, it is targeting raising service levels again to 70 per cent of its normal schedule.

Ryanair’s current service levels compare favourably with its competitors, with main rival Easyjet now looking to fly just 40 per cent of services through the third quarter.

However, fellow low-cost flier Wizz Air flew at 74 per cent capacity in July, although it is considerably smaller than the other two carriers.

Before the Open newsletter: Start your day with the City View podcast and key market data

In July, Ryanair flew 4.4m customers in total, despite the government reimposing quarantine restrictions on Spain, one of the UK’s most popular holiday destinations.

Along with Easyjet, the carrier said that it would continue to fly to Spain regardless of the restrictions, though said booking for the coming weeks had fallen due to fears of a surge in infections.

Chief executive Michael O’Leary called the government’s decision a “badly managed overreaction”.

Read more: Easyjet chief: We will keep flying to quarantined countries if there is demand

Ministers panicked, he said, and implemented a blanket quarantine rather than restricting travel to regions where there has been a prominent surge in new cases.

Subsequently, the restrictions have been extended to Luxembourg, with Belgium broadly expected to follow suit imminently.