Just days after airline Ryanair had declared in a public statement that flights from U.S. to Europe for $15 could be put in place in the near future, the Dublin, Ireland-based airline company is now retracting that statement. Chief Executive Michael O’Leary had said previously in the week that the airline was planning to feature dirt-cheap flights over the Atlantic, from the U.S. to Europe, for as little as $15 or around 10 pounds. However, in a brief stock exchange statement, the board of Ryanair was forced to admit that this would not be possible.
Ryanair’s flight model is a cheap “no-frills, low-cost, get-you-from-A-to-B model” as stated on their website. The site says that the mission statement of Ryanair was and is to provide the cheapest flights available amongst competitors like Norwegian Air who offers transatlantic flights for $200, and WOW air, who offers flights from the US to Ireland for 99 bucks. Although Ryanair guarantees to have the cheapest flights around, the company is looking a little remiss at just what is possible for the airline company.
In an earlier statement to the BBC, O’Leary had said that the company was “dependent on attaining viable long-haul aircraft and we estimate that’s four to five years away”. In that time, it was proposed that the flights would be as low as $15 dollars, completely blowing the competition out of the water.
Although it all sounded well and good for the airline and its over 86.4 million passengers last year, looking for economical options to travel across the Atlantic, history tells us that low-cost flight companies have tried and failed where Ryanair hopes to succeed. In the 70s, now defunct Laker Airways launched low-cost flights only to go bust 5 years after and previously mentioned Norwegian Air is also taking some losses for the first time in 8 years.
The company has however made preliminary plans to service flights to 14 European and 14 American cities, including Miami, Boston, Chicago, New York, and Dublin, London, and Berlin in Europe. Ryanair and its directors will need to better plan their model if they want to compete with main airlines like British Airways and American Airlines, who have the monopoly over the transatlantic route.