By Alex Trelinski • 18 April 2020 • 18:07
Image of the forest fire burning in the Community of Madrid.
Credit: [email protected]
OUTSPOKEN Ryanair boss, Michael O’Leary has attacked easyJet and other rival carriers over plans for social distancing on flights to Spain and the UK, when passenger services eventually return.
easyJet have come out in favour of removing the middle seat to give customers a protective buffer-zone to persuade them to return to air travel once the coronavirus pandemic has subsided.
A number of carriers seem set to go along with the idea that was first mooted by air regulator IATA, but Ryanair’s Michael O’Leary has branded the inflight innovation as “nonsense.”
The controversial chief says that getting rid of the middle seat will do absolutely nothing to boost the confidence of customers or anything to stop the spread of Covid-19.
“We are in dialogue with regulators who are sitting in their bedrooms inventing restrictions such as taking out the middle seats which is just nonsense. It would have no beneficial effect whatsoever,” said O’Leary.
Even if the middle seat is removed, O’Leary feels that the two metre social distancing rules would not be followed, and they would have been broken anyway long before any passengers boarded the aircraft.
“People would travel to an airport without social distancing. You can’t do social distancing in the airport either at check-in, at security, at shops and restaurants. Even the airports admit that.”
The Ryanair chief executive suggested that his European competitors ought to be learning some lessons from Asia, where travellers have a compulsory temperature check and must wear a face mask.
“That seems to me to be the best that we can manage,” O’Leary commented.
He also threw some further pungent comments at his rivals, as he claimed that even if the middle seats were blocked, Ryanair would at least break even, whilst other carriers would struggle financially.
“Most of them were losing money even when they sold the middle seat!”
Share this story
Subscribe to our Euro Weekly News alerts to get the latest stories into your inbox!
By signing up, you will create a Euro Weekly News account if you don’t already have one. Review our
Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *
Download our media pack in either English or Spanish.