Thursday 19 October 2017

Ryanair re-launches holiday service, promising 'lowest price' packages

Ryanair Holidays

Frankfurt-Hahn Airport. Passengers board a Ryanair passenger plane. Photo by Ulrich Baumgarrten via Getty Images
Frankfurt-Hahn Airport. Passengers board a Ryanair passenger plane. Photo by Ulrich Baumgarrten via Getty Images
Kenny Jacobs and friends launch 'Ryanair Holidays'
Pól Ó Conghaile

Pól Ó Conghaile

Ryanair has re-launched the package holiday service it recently suspended due to what it calls "illegal screen-scraping".

Ryanair Holidays was originally launched in Ireland, the UK and Germany on December 1st, with other markets expected to follow in 2017.

“We temporarily suspended our Holidays service in January, and terminated our agreement with the software provider who was found to be unlawfully scraping Ryanair’s low fares," says Robin Kiely, its Head of Communications.

"All existing Ryanair Holidays bookings are secure and we are pleased to have re-launched Ryanair Holidays last month, having finalised an agreement with a new software provider, HLX Touristik, to once more offer the lowest price package holidays," he added.

HLX Touristik (hlx.com) is a German software provider headquartered in Baden-Baden. It has similar arrangements with Lufthansa and SWISS.

As we publish, Ryanair Holidays available from Irish airports include flights, transfers and four nights half-board at a four-star hotel in Majorca from €299pp (travelling midweek in April), and a three-night city break in Rome from €199pp.

Kenny Jacobs and friends launch 'Ryanair Holidays'
Kenny Jacobs and friends launch 'Ryanair Holidays'

“We will not allow any third party software provider to 'screenscrape' and unlawfully re-sell Ryanair’s low fares," Kiely says.

'Screen-scraping' involves the use of software to collect information from websites and systems, and Ryanair has a rich history of taking action against companies it sees as 'scraping' such information for their advantage.

Ryanair Holidays initially involved a partnership with Spain-based tour operator, Logitravel, and accommodation provider, World2Meet.

In January, Logitravel confirmed the ending of its agreement with Ryanair, but denied using "web-scraping techniques" on the airline's website.

"We are connected to a Global Distribution System like Amadeus, as well as other air travel consolidators, which provide us with the product," the company said in a statement issued at the time to Independent.ie Travel.

"The partnership was ended by Ryanair and not Logitravel," it stressed, but added that it understood the decision, admired the airline and its CEO "both professionally and personally", and wished Ryanair good luck with the project.

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