Ryanair offers its pilots improved pay and conditions

Dianna Christensen
October 9, 2017

Asked by an investor at the September 21 meeting if he had made changes to the rostering department, O'Leary said that it was "not the time to be taking people out and shooting them".

Ryanair said the cancellations were brought about because of an error with pilot holiday rosters and insisted the latest reduction in its schedule will "eliminate all risk of further flight cancellations".

In a statement the airline's CEO Michael O'Leary paid tribute to Mr Hickey, who joined Ryanair in 1988 as an engineer.

Mr O'Leary offered a loyalty bonus of £10,786 to pilots and pay increases, but didn't guarantee they will be granted to pilots at all Ryanair bases. "I have the utmost respect and admiration for Ryanair's pilot team", he said.

"If you have, or are considering joining one of these less financially secure or Brexit-challenged airlines, I urge you to stay with Ryanair for a brighter future for you and you family", he said.

Mr O'Leary's letter implored the pilot team not to leave the airline and offered them improved terms and working conditions. While Ryanair does not recognize trade unions, pilots have launched web and social media forums in recent months to air their grievances.

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He concluded the message to pilots by asking them to give the airline any evidence of higher pay by a rival at their base so Ryanair could "meet it and beat it".

Mistakes meant more than 700,000 passengers have seen flights affected.

Referencing the cancellations announced last month, he apologised personally and said there had been "poor planning" during the airline's "rostering failure".

The airline blamed the flight fiasco on its own mistaken decision to force its pilots to take their remaining annual leave before the end of this year, rather than by the end of the financial year next March.

Thus, Ryanair was left without enough pilots to carry out regular flights in September and October.

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