Unfortunate Experience with Ryanair: Seeking Advice on an Unresolved Complaint

We all know that air travel can sometimes be fraught with challenges and unexpected hurdles. Most of us, however, have certain expectations when it comes to the professionalism and efficiency of airlines, especially those as widely known as Ryanair. Unfortunately, my recent experience with Ryanair on September 8th, 2022, during a flight from Lisbon to Dublin, was far from the seamless journey I had anticipated.

I want to share my ordeal and seek advice from you who may have faced similar situations. I believe that sharing our stories can shed light on issues that need to be addressed within the airline industry.

The Incident:

On that fateful day, I arrived at Lisbon Airport Terminal 2 well in advance, confident in my preparedness for the journey. Little did I know that I was about to encounter a distressing incident that would leave my family and me in a state of humiliation and confusion.

After passing through initial security and immigration checks, I presented my documents to a Ryanair staff member, as is customary. That's when things took a turn for the worse. Despite having all the necessary documents, including a Portuguese Residence Card, and explaining my immigration status, I was asked for an Ireland Visa, completely disregarding my Indefinite Leave to Remain status endorsed on my passport.

I was singled out and left isolated, with no explanation or support. My attempts to clarify the situation were met with indifference and even hostility. To my shock, one staff member even uttered, "I don't care," as I explained the consequences for my family's travel plans.

The Aftermath:

The incident resulted in not only emotional turmoil but also significant financial implications. I had to rebook flights due to Ryanair's staff conduct and incompetence, incurring avoidable expenses that I find deeply unjust and unwarranted.

Seeking Resolution:

In my quest for resolution, I formally lodged a complaint with Ryanair, requesting:

1. A comprehensive investigation into the incident.
2. A formal apology acknowledging the distress, humiliation, and financial loss caused.
3. Appropriate compensation for the additional expenses incurred.
4. Comprehensive staff training on immigration regulations, customer service, and cultural sensitivity.
5. A commitment from Ryanair to prevent such incidents in the future.

However, despite the gravity of the situation and the distress it caused my family and me, Ryanair declined my claim, leaving me with no choice but to seek advice from the travel community.

Seeking Advice:

I turn to you, for guidance. Have any of you experienced similar situations with airlines, and if so, how did you navigate them? Do you have any suggestions for how I can address this unresolved complaint with Ryanair? Your insights and advice are greatly appreciated.

As travelers, we deserve to be treated with respect and professionalism by the airlines we choose to fly with. Let us come together to ensure that our voices are heard and that airlines are held accountable for their actions.

I look forward to hearing your experiences and advice, and I hope that by sharing our stories, we can work towards a more transparent and passenger-centric airline industry.


  • eskbanker
    eskbanker Posts: 29,971
    First Anniversary Name Dropper Photogenic First Post
    uuoukey said:
    Most of us, however, have certain expectations when it comes to the professionalism and efficiency of airlines, especially those as widely known as Ryanair.
    Most of us do have certain expectations when it comes to Ryanair, but the characteristics you mention would rarely feature in them!  Forgive the flippancy, but they're hardly known for customer service....

    In terms of your complaint, I can understand the frustration, but your extensive wish list of resolution items is hopelessly ambitious, so in your shoes I'd focus on recovering out of pocket expenses.  If you haven't had any sort of recompense and appear unlikely to get anywhere with Ryanair themselves, you could do worse than escalating the matter to the Irish aviation regulator:


    IMHO it's probably best to stick to the facts rather than all the emotive stuff, i.e. make a simple case that Ryanair were at fault in their verification of legitimate documentation, and that you incurred various costs as a result of this, and that you're therefore seeking reimbursement.
  • bagand96
    bagand96 Posts: 6,027
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    If you were incorrectly denied boarding when you had a valid ticket and valid travel documents then you should be entitled to:

    - Rerouting costs for replacement flights; and
    - Fixed compensation of €400 for LIS-DUB (1642km)

    The relevant law is EC261/2004.  As above you could escalate to the IAA.  You could also taking small claims court action against Ryanair, on the face of it you have a strong case.  I'd also agree, keep any complaints (to Ryanair and anyone else) short, matter of fact and without emotion.

    It's not clear what happened with the rest of your family.  Could they have travelled? Was it only you who was denied boarding?  If it was just yourself then Ryanair may argue there's nothing due to the rest of your family as they were not denied boarding.  I'm not sure how the law would apply there in the opinion of the IAAor a court.
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