Ryanair likely to be in breach of EU Unfair Commercial Practices Directive – Hayes
Brian Hayes MEP today said that Ryanair could be in breach of the EU’s Unfair Commercial Practices Directive through ‘misleading commercial practices’.
“Ryanair’s decision to cancel up to 50 flights per day for the next six weeks is an act of gross negligence in commercial behaviour. Up to 400,000 passengers could be affected.
“There are much larger implications for Ryanair than just providing compensation to affected passengers. This action by Ryanair is likely to be a breach of the EU’s Unfair Commercial Practices Directive which protects consumers against misleading and aggressive commercial practices.
“Under this Directive, Ireland’s Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) is empowered to investigate unfair commercial practices. It is quite evident that Ryanair has not adhered to its responsibilities under EU consumer protection law which requires that there be a special standard of care be exercised towards consumers.
“A ‘misleading commercial practice’ under EU law is regarded as a commercial action that provides false or deceptive information or is likely to cause the consumer to take a transactional decision he or she would have not taken otherwise. If Ryanair was prepared to offer these flights for purchase, it had a duty to ensure that it had adequate resources in place to carry out the service. If consumers had known about Ryanair’s resourcing problem, they would not have booked these flights.
“I am calling on the CCPC to conduct an investigation into Ryanair’s cancellation of flights. There are clear problems with Ryanair’s actions under EU consumer protection law. Given the scale of the problem and the number of consumers affected, this issue should be addressed immediately and given priority by the CCPC.
“Ryanair has been the biggest beneficiary of the EU’s Single Aviation Market and it has taken full advantage of the single market. Passengers have also benefited from Ryanair’s offering through cheap flights. Yet mass cancellations like this cannot go unpunished. It needs to be made very clear that there are high standards of consumer protection in the EU that Ryanair needs to adhere to. As Ryanair is headquartered in Ireland, the CCPC also has a responsibility to show that it is enforcing EU consumer law properly.”