Ryanair passengers frustrated by refunds process amid cancelled flights
Ryanair passengers are reporting problems with the process of refunds or compensation for cancelled flights, saying information supplied by the airline is incorrect and calls are going unanswered.
Angry customers are inundating Ryanair's Facebook page with reports of problems with the airline's refund and compensation process, and its complaints tracker.
Many are also complaining their calls and messages through the airline's call centre and online "chat" service are going unanswered or being cut off.
Holly Jayne Austin posted: "Has anyone managed to get through to Ryanair or had a refund? Won't let me refund and they are just cancelling my call."
while Laure Savoy wrote: "How can I ask for the EU261 compensation and refund if on your website the cancelled fight number is unknown for you?"
Lena Heritage wrote: "Please let me know how we can contact you! You emailed us two days ago to notify us that our flight home from Barcelona has been cancelled, instructing us to sign in to our account to rearrange an alternative flight.
"We have since been stuck in a constant loop of being asked to verify our account and being asked to change our password.
"We've not been able to get through on the extortionately-priced phone line (repeatedly in a queue then eventually cut off)."
Birinder Singh Tiwana posted: "I applied for refund and compensation by filling a form on their website and got a customer reference number of seven digits via email which does not work on their complaint tracker system.
"I tried to chat to their agents about this but the agent had no answer and disconnected the chat instead."
The complaints follow some other Ryanair passengers reporting having to pay a second time to pick seats or take hold luggage when rebooking cancelled flights.
The travellers who were offered "free" replacement flights discovered they were not refunded for charges on extras paid on their original booking, leaving them having to pay twice.
The Dublin-based carrier - which is shelving up to 50 flights daily over the next six weeks - said it was aware of the issue and any customers who were double-charged for seats or hold luggage will be refunded.
Ryanair faces a compensation bill of up to €20 million over the cancellations brought about by the over-allocation of pilots' holidays during a relatively busy period.
The airline said it was cancelling flights at airports where it ran the busiest schedules so it would be easier to place passengers on alternative flights.
Customers affected by cancellations which run until October 28 will be emailed offers of alternatives or full refunds and details of their compensation entitlement, the budget airline confirmed.
Michael O'Leary, the airline's chief executive, told a press conference on Tuesday that it was clear the debacle had a "large reputational impact" and apologised.