Ryanair baggage fee policy ruled as 'abusive' in Spain

Marco Green
November 21, 2019

Irish airline Ryanair has criticised a ruling by a Spanish court over its baggage policy.

The passenger was flying from Madrid to Brussels when she was charged almost $22 to board the plane with a small suitcase, which fit in the overhead baggage area, The Telegraph reported.

The Ryanair baggage scheme, which was introduced past year, hands passengers an additional fee if they bring anything but a small personal bag on board a flight as hand luggage.

The airline charges for anything more than a personal item. Any larger bags of up to 10kg require a luggage fee, or else a priority boarding pass, which is more expensive than a regular boarding pass.

A Spanish court said baggage fees imposed by Ryanair are "abusive" in response to a lawsuit filed by a passenger forced to pay almost $22 for her small luggage.

The court ordered Ryanair to refund her the €20 plus interest, but rejected her demand for a further €10 in compensation for alleged suffering, according to court documents.

In February, Italy's antitrust authority fined Ryanair €3m and Hungary's Wizzair €1m over their cabin baggage policy on grounds it was tantamount to raising ticket prices in a "non-transparent" manner.

It said it "condemns" the company for forcing the passenger to pay a supplement at the time of boarding even though the carry-on bag, by its size and weight, "could be perfectly transported in the cabin".

The judge characterised the charge as abusive, adding that it "curtailed the rights that the passenger has recognised by law", and declared it invalid in Spain.

It ruled the policy to be null and void and told Ryanair "to remove it" from its terms and conditions.

The Spanish court said the decision could not be appealed; however, it is not now clear whether the airline will file an appeal with the European Court of Justice.

When asked if it was planning to ignore the Spanish ruling or appeal it in the European Court of Justice, Ryanair declined to comment.

The court said in a statement that its ruling can not be appealed.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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