Ryanair not expecting to operate any flights in April or May
The airline said that most of their flights will be grounded from today.
Ryanair Chief Executive Michael O’Leary said that most of the airline’s flights will be grounded from Tuesday (24 March) and that they do not expect to operate any flights during the months of April and May.
In a statement issued to all Ryanair Group Airlines Customers on Tuesday, O’Leary apologised for the “necessary” and “unavoidable” disruptions to Ryanair customers, which he attributed to “unprecedented restrictions on citizen movement” and “which have closed Europe’s skies to all but a tiny number of repatriation/rescue flights”.
A message to all Ryanair Group customers: pic.twitter.com/nzDhDt9jz4
— Ryanair (@Ryanair) March 24, 2020
O’Leary said that Ryanair have offered all of their aircraft to EU governments for rescue flights and to operate essential flights for the movement of vital medicines, personal protective equipment and, if necessary, emergency food supplies.
He added that Ryanair are continuing to work with EU governments on rescue flights to return stranded passengers to their home countries under maximum safety.
Ryanair, O’Leary said, do not expect to operate flights during the months of April or May and added that while nobody knows how long it will take for the spread of the Covid-19 virus to be contained, the Chinese experience suggests it will take at least three months before there is a resumption of Ryanair services.
“We do not expect to operate flights during the months of April and May at this time, but this will clearly depend upon Government advice, and we will in all cases comply with these instructions,” O’Leary said.
The Ryanair CEO also added that the airline has had to reduce office staff by 50% for social distancing reasons and urged customers not to contact Ryanair by phone; all Ryanair customers affected by the grounding of Ryanair flights will receive e-mail communications in due course.
“Please do not call our phonelines as the reduced staffing will be unable to accommodate anything but the most urgent of cases, which over the coming days, will be rescue flights,” O’Leary said.