Ryanair chief Michael O’Leary supported staff in the trenches at Dublin Airport during the weekend by assisting with boarding gates and security checks.
Users of social media posted pictures of the airline’s CEO assisting passengers another hectic day at terminal one on Saturday.
It was another hectic weekend at the airport that continues to recruit additional security personnel in the middle of the hectic summer season.
Last month, Daa was forced to apologize after thousands of customers queued for hours outside the terminal building, with many passengers eventually missing their flights.
Daa said that passengers who missed vacations on foot due to security delays may be able to get back the cost of their vacation. About 1,500 passengers missed their flights.
“All relevant, direct and reasonable costs incurred that are confirmed or substantiated by receipts or evidence will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis,” a Daa spokesman told the Sunday Independent.
Following the scandal, Daa announced that it would reassign additional staff to security checks while recruitment continues.
The agency said more than 600 working group members have worked more than 3,000 shifts over the past 10 weeks, “to support our phenomenally broader security team, as we continue to welcome passengers back to Dublin Airport and rebuild our post-pandemic operations”.
More than 800 employees at Dublin Airport, including a large number of security personnel, left the organization by the end of 2020 through a voluntary redundancy program.
Daa still advises passengers to arrive at the airport two and a half hours before short-haul flights and three and a half hours before long-haul flights, while an extra hour should be given if bags need to be dropped off or if people need to visit a check-in counter.
O’Leary’s appearance on the front lines with Dublin Airport and Ryanair’s staff over the weekend comes as bookings for Europe’s largest budget airlines have continued to strengthen.
Mr O’Leary told Reuters that “we have seen very strong bookings in May. We had a 92 per cent cabin factor in May. We think it would rise to around 94 per cent in June. And July, August and September look very strong with higher load factors and also higher prices ”.
“Prices are likely to rise high in single digits 7.8, 9 percent in the summer of 2019,” he said.
French cabin crew on Ryanair went on strike last week, demanding better wages and working conditions, which led to more than 40 flights being canceled.
Meanwhile, Ryanair’s cabin crew in Portugal and Italy plan to strike at the end of June.
SNPVAC, Portugal’s civil aviation union, said workers would go out on June 24, 25 and 26 and demand better working conditions.
“This mobilization is not only an opportunity to focus on several attacks on the dignity of workers and to make this reality known, but also a moment to show unity and solidarity against dumping,” the union said.
Meanwhile, in Italy, the unions FILT-CGIL and UIL Trasporti said that Ryanair’s staff and crew had announced a 24-hour strike on June 25 to try to improve wages and conditions.
The news follows an announcement from unions representing some of Ryanair’s cabin crew in Spain that they plan to strike from June 24-26 and June 30 to July 2, following wage disputes.
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