Tuesday, January 27, 2009

EasyJet feels so much safer than Ryanair

It's funny, but I've a grudging respect for easyJet. I like to think it's the good influence of Go - the British Airways lowcost operator who got swallowed up by easyJet a lot of years ago.

easyJet take safety very seriously. They must know that "low cost" would quickly be reversioned "corner cutting" if they were involved in an air accident, and their business would be doomed.

Ryanair logo

On the other hand, Ryanair have had their fair share of thrills over the years - remember the plane that didn't land at Derry airport? - and yet onboard I get no feeling of confidence about safety.

This morning's FR6122 red eye from Belfast City to Stansted started badly, with boarding sequence numbers being completely ignored, and passengers being boarded like cattle.

Then there was the "put that hot drink in the green bin before you board" instruction as I walked out towards the plane. Bad enough that they charge so much for on-board refreshment, but worse still to deprive passengers of finishing drinks (in cups with lids) bought in the terminal.

But the worst problem was during the safety announcement. There's pretty good evidence that when people listen to the announcement and are aware of the brace position and the locations of emergency exits, they are significantly more likely to get off a crashed plane alive.

So it was appalling to realise that at the point the safety announcement had started to describe the location of the exits, one of the cabin crew wasn't yet in place to wave her arms in time with the words. She got in place and caught up a few seconds later, but it seemed to underline the lack of rigour with which Ryanair view these things. And potentially deprived some passengers of a clear mental picture about the exits.

Surely the senior cabin crew shouldn't have okayed starting the tape until everyone had stopped doing their pre-takeoff duties and taken their proper positions?

Ryanair could do with instilling more confidence in their customers minds as they travel in their blue and yellow portable shopping arcades.

Update - bought a copy of Ruinair to read on the way home!


connormcc said...

thanks, im flying ryanair tomorrow to Stockholm, ha

Timothy Belmont said...

I haven't had the pleasure of travelling with Ryanair yet. My relatives don't like Ryanair and, in fundamental terms, it all boils down to their attitude.

I have flown with Easyjet many times and I've never had any cause to complain.

John Self said...

I have never flown Ryanair and never will, if I can avoid it. Last year I drove to Belfast International to fly easyJet instead of flying Ryanair from the City.

They have nothing but contempt for their customers, employees and basically everyone who gets in the way of their bottom line. A little like an airborne Tesco, as evidenced last night by that appalling woman they put on to argue with Hugh F-W about the company's commitment* to poultry welfare. At least that persuaded Mrs Self that I was right to shun Tesco where possible.

*they don't have one, was the impression I got.

Timothy Belmont said...

"...that appalling woman they put on to argue with Hugh F-W about the company's commitment* to poultry welfare..."

I watched it, too. Her eyes almost popped out on to Hugh's lap! What a dragon; Tesco hand-pilcked her especially for him. :-)

Anonymous said...

I have flown Ryanair from Dublin to London, not great but OK. BMI from Belfast City to London and back was torture, didn't feel too safe on that one! Best of all, I can't recommend highly enough is Aer Lingus from Belfast International to Heathrow. Great service, very cheap, pleasant and friendly crew.

Timothy Belmont said...

Like Alan In Belfast, because I live so close to Belfast City Airport I tend to give it preferential treatment! I'll bear that in mind, though.


Alan in Belfast said...

Funny enough, now living equidistant between BFS and BHD (at least at 5.30 in the morning) my loyalty is a little more divided than it used to be. They're both 20 minutes away!

mister tumnus said...

i flew ryanair once and i will never ever do it again, no matter how cheap their flights get. it was the worst flight i have ever had. from the rude stewardess to the sick bag full of sick on my seat when i boarded to the dreadful landing. i got the distinct impression their staff weren't being paid or trained very well (including the pilots). i am not ever nervous of flying and it came as a real shock to me to feel to unsafe. we complained and heard nothing back.

this coupled with the fact that every time the ryanair boss guy is on tv he seems to have an 'i don't give a toss' attitude to his customers....

i would pay extra for easyjet anytime. and thank god they didn't get to take over aerlingus!

dkh said...

tsk tsk, did you not realise that ryan is #1 for customer service ?


and how can they be so sure ??
Well, they have a number of "right first time measures!