The Irish low fare airline Ryanair has announced that in the next five to ten years it will offer free flights. The airline plans to recoup it’s costs by sharing revenue with airports.
Michael O`Leary the Ryanair’s chief executive said:
“The challenge for us in the future is to keep driving air fares down. I have this vision that in the next five to 10 years that the air fares on Ryanair will be free, in which case the flights will be full, and we will be making our money out of sharing the airport revenues; of all the people who will be running through airports, and getting a share of the shopping and the retail revenues at airports.”
The company is expecting a total of 119 million passengers to fly on it’s planes for 2016 and the company is also aggressively adding more planes to it’s fleet, including two-hundred Boeing planes, that will be added progressively until 2024,
From The Guardian
O` Leary added: “I think it will happen. It just won’t happen at Heathrow or those big hub airports. But most of the other airports who are looking for big traffic growth, that process is already starting to happen, lowering airport fees and some of the charges.”
O’Leary said: “If [air passenger duty] is gone: at many airports I’m paying more than £20 already with APD and fees, if I start getting that back, why not? I’m doing seat sales this week at £4 and I’m paying the £13 APD – I’m paying you to fly with me.
“Instead of promotional tickets being £9 or £5 they will be free.”
Average fares on Ryanair last year were €46 (£39), including one checked bag, and Ryanair has said they will fall by 10% to 15% this year. About a quarter of the airlines’s income is from add-ons such as car hire and inflight sales.