Disabled Ryanair customer collapses after missing her flight due to baggage charge chaos

A disabled woman missed her Ryanair flight due to the new luggage rules the airline has introduced and then collapsed at the gate.

Awatef Ben Haj Fraj was due to board a Ryanair flight from London Stansted to Morocco yesterday afternoon, however when she arrived at the gate she was told by staff that she would have to pay for her hand luggage, despite having already purchased priority boarding.

Mrs Ben Haj Fraj had checked in and arrived at the gate in plenty of time and had raised with staff at the boarding gate that she shouldn’t have to pay for her hand luggage as she had ‘read the terms and conditions’, which stated that the hand luggage was included in the priority boarding ticket.

From today the Dublin-based airline introduced charges for passengers flying with a small suitcase 

From today the Dublin-based airline introduced charges for passengers flying with a small suitcase 

From today the Dublin-based airline introduced charges for passengers flying with a small suitcase 

The 40-year-old from London said: ‘The staff member said I have to pay for it, I then had to wait 20 minutes until she got confirmation that I was entitled to take it on the flight, this made me late for the flight.’

Mrs Ben Haj Fraj said she was then told to go to another gate, but when she arrived at the gate there were no Ryanair staff present to assist her.

At the gate next to her, she asked other Ryanair staff for help only to be told that they wouldn’t help her because ‘it’s not the flight we are boarding.’

Mrs Ben Haj Fraj walked away from the gate, only to hear the staff members being rude towards her saying: ‘These bloody passengers, Swissport don’t pay me for this information, we’re leaving Ryanair soon thank god can’t deal with their passengers’.

She said there had been no final call for her to board the flight to Morocco, which she learnt had then been delayed by three hours.

Despite the delay, staff were unable to let her board the FR1364 flight to Radat.

Mrs Ben Haj Fraj had been due to depart from Stansted Airport (pictured) at 4.35PM on Thursday 1 November, but missed her flight due to the new Ryanair luggage rules

Mrs Ben Haj Fraj had been due to depart from Stansted Airport (pictured) at 4.35PM on Thursday 1 November, but missed her flight due to the new Ryanair luggage rules

Mrs Ben Haj Fraj had been due to depart from Stansted Airport (pictured) at 4.35PM on Thursday 1 November, but missed her flight due to the new Ryanair luggage rules

‘I needed to get on that flight and I didn’t even end up going to Morocco because of this new policy.

‘The flight was delayed for three hours so they could have done something about it. I sat in the airport for two hours but they wouldn’t let me board the flight.

‘I was travelling on my own as I was going on holiday to see my family. My husband lives in Morocco. I planned this trip two weeks ago and when I read the terms and conditions it said that any passengers travelling from 1st November cannot take hand luggage unless they have purchased priority boarding.’

This graphic shows how Ryanair's new charges will be applied. Passengers have to pay £8 to check in a 10kg bag and if you bring a second bag to the gate or you first bag is too big, you will be charged a fee of £25

This graphic shows how Ryanair's new charges will be applied. Passengers have to pay £8 to check in a 10kg bag and if you bring a second bag to the gate or you first bag is too big, you will be charged a fee of £25

This graphic shows how Ryanair’s new charges will be applied. Passengers have to pay £8 to check in a 10kg bag and if you bring a second bag to the gate or you first bag is too big, you will be charged a fee of £25

Having missed the flight due to the new policy, she has now had to book onto another flight to Morocco, which is departing on Saturday.

‘The original flight had cost £300, I had to pay another £100 to change the flight to the one leaving on Saturday. I live in Camden and it cost me £70 in a taxi to get here and it cost me £70 to get back.

‘I’m really unwell and no one at the airport would help me with my bags. None of the Ryanair staff cared about my transfers. I’ll also have to pay to get back here on Saturday.’

From November 1, passengers can only take one small personal bag on board measuring 40x20x25cm that must fit under the seat in front

From November 1, passengers can only take one small personal bag on board measuring 40x20x25cm that must fit under the seat in front

From November 1, passengers can only take one small personal bag on board measuring 40x20x25cm that must fit under the seat in front

On her departure from the airport Mrs Ben Haj Fraj was surprised at the laissez-faire nature of staff.

‘My flight was an international one, so they should have taken me to international arrivals. They took me to domestic arrivals and let me out by myself so that’s a breech. Then when I got my bags bag they were extremely damaged.

What exactly IS Ryanair’s baggage policy? 

From November 1, passengers can only take one small personal bag on board measuring 40x20x25cm that must fit under the seat in front. 

If you bring a second bag to the gate or you first bag is too big you will be charged a fee of £25. 

Passengers have to pay £8 to check in a 10kg bag.

Passengers who pay for priority boarding – which costs £6 – will continue to be allowed to take both a ‘personal bag’ and small suitcase as hand baggage. 

‘I’m really ill – I have disability letters from the hospital, I collapsed at the gate and staff just walked past me. This will be the last time I travel with Ryanair. Their new policy is complicated.

‘They should be telling staff about this new policy, Ryanair staff at the airport weren’t properly informed. I’m really not happy about this and I’m going to sue the company.’ 

‘This is the worst day of my life because of bloody Ryanair.’

Ryanair had been forced to waive some of its controversial new baggage fees yesterday amid confusion among thousands of passengers at airports.

From yesterday, the airline no longer allows passengers to take a small suitcase in the hold for free, forcing them to pay a minimum of £8 for any bag that won’t fit under the seat in front.

Passengers across the UK have branded the policy ‘outrageous’ and many said that it was ‘typical Ryanair’. 

Passengers have to pay £8 to check in a 10kg bag.

Passengers who pay for priority boarding - which costs £6 - will continue to be allowed to take both a 'personal bag' and small suitcase as hand baggage

Passengers have to pay £8 to check in a 10kg bag.

Passengers who pay for priority boarding - which costs £6 - will continue to be allowed to take both a 'personal bag' and small suitcase as hand baggage

Passengers have to pay £8 to check in a 10kg bag.

Passengers who pay for priority boarding - which costs £6 - will continue to be allowed to take both a 'personal bag' and small suitcase as hand baggage

Passengers have to pay £8 to check in a 10kg bag.

Passengers who pay for priority boarding - which costs £6 - will continue to be allowed to take both a 'personal bag' and small suitcase as hand baggage

Passengers have to pay £8 to check in a 10kg bag. Passengers who pay for priority boarding – which costs £6 – will continue to be allowed to take both a ‘personal bag’ and small suitcase as hand baggage

Emma Rutherford (left) and her husband Andrew (right) were catching a Ryanair flight to the south of France, where they regularly stay at their holiday home. They said you end up paying much more than you set out to travelling with Ryanair

Emma Rutherford (left) and her husband Andrew (right) were catching a Ryanair flight to the south of France, where they regularly stay at their holiday home. They said you end up paying much more than you set out to travelling with Ryanair

Emma Rutherford (left) and her husband Andrew (right) were catching a Ryanair flight to the south of France, where they regularly stay at their holiday home. They said you end up paying much more than you set out to travelling with Ryanair

Emma Rutherford (left) and her husband Andrew (right) were catching a Ryanair flight to the south of France, where they regularly stay at their holiday home. They said you end up paying much more than you set out to travelling with Ryanair

Emma Rutherford (left) and her husband Andrew (right) were catching a Ryanair flight to the south of France, where they regularly stay at their holiday home. They said you end up paying much more than you set out to travelling with Ryanair

Emma and Andrew Rutherford, from Kingston, south west London, were catching a Ryanair flight to the south of France, where they regularly stay at their holiday home.

The couple always use Ryanair, which has the most convenient route to Bergerac, and will be regularly affected by the new fees.

Mr Rutherford, 58, a co-owner of a recruitment firm, said: ‘You might as well quadruple the price of their flights because you end up paying so much more than they say you will.

The maximum size of 'personal bags' allowed on board has been increased by 40

The maximum size of 'personal bags' allowed on board has been increased by 40

The maximum size of ‘personal bags’ allowed on board has been increased by 40%

‘They are not doing themselves any favours. You can pay £9.99 for the flight and then £69 in add ons.

‘I’d rather they just tell you it’s going to cost £70 from the start. It is like they are trying to charge us for everything nowadays. Weren’t they going to make people pay to use the toilets?’ 

The stringent new rules have led to confusion among many who have pointed out that if they pay for priority boarding – which costs £6 – they will continue to be allowed to take both a ‘personal bag’ and a small suitcase as hand baggage. 

Craig and Gina Steventon had to pay additional charges to be sat next to each other on the aircraft

Craig and Gina Steventon had to pay additional charges to be sat next to each other on the aircraft

Craig and Gina Steventon had to pay additional charges to be sat next to each other on the aircraft

Craig and Gina Steventon, from Lancashire, paid £12 each for Priority Boarding on a return flight to Pisa in Italy when they were warned by the airline they would otherwise have to pay £8 each for their hand luggage.

Craig, a 57-year-old business consultant, said: ‘It’s ridiculous. It’s just so typical of Ryanair.

‘You half expect it from them now – you think your getting a cheap flight but it’s not.

‘Our flights started off at £78 and it ended up being about £200 in the end because of all the add ons.

‘And £24 of that was for the priority boarding that we didn’t even need as now they are letting people on with their cases for free because of all the confusion.

‘They should just tell everybody upfront how much the flight and everything that goes with it is going to cost rather than making it all so complicated.’

Wife Gina, 58, said: ‘We should get a refund.

‘Ryanair need to refund us for the money we have wasted on a Priority Boarding we didn’t need, now they are letting other passengers off without paying for their cases.

‘They told us the charges were coming in so we booked Priority Boarding which turned out to be a waste of money.

‘Everything is an add on all the time.

Dennis Norman was travelling with his four year old grandson Angus (left) and his wife Maggie (right) when they were hit with the new Ryanair charges

Dennis Norman was travelling with his four year old grandson Angus (left) and his wife Maggie (right) when they were hit with the new Ryanair charges

Dennis Norman was travelling with his four year old grandson Angus (left) and his wife Maggie (right) when they were hit with the new Ryanair charges

Dennis Norman was travelling with his four year old grandson Angus (left) and his wife Maggie (right) when they were hit with the new Ryanair charges

Dennis Norman was travelling with his four year old grandson Angus (left) and his wife Maggie (right) when they were hit with the new Ryanair charges

‘We even had to pay £28 to sit together on the flight, otherwise Craig would have been sat at the front and I would be stuck at the back.

‘They split you up, even though you can see there are seats available next to each other, unless you pay for it.’

Ryanair said the change, which was announced in August, ‘was necessary to reduce delays’ but many have labelled it a ‘rip off’ and threatened to boycott the airline. 

One couple branded the airline ‘outrageous’ after they were faced with the new charges at the airport.

Retired married couple, Maggie and Dennis Norman, were returning home to Belfast with their two grandsons Adam, 15, and Angus, four, after spending three days in London.

A chaotic departure lounge is pictured this morning after the Ryanair baggage changes caused confusion and misery for passengers 

A chaotic departure lounge is pictured this morning after the Ryanair baggage changes caused confusion and misery for passengers 

A chaotic departure lounge is pictured this morning after the Ryanair baggage changes caused confusion and misery for passengers 

Husband Dennis, a 64-year-old retired teacher, said: ‘It is outrageous but it’s so typical of Ryanair. We didn’t even know about the additional hand luggage charge.

‘I didn’t see it in the booking details. It was just attached underneath in the fine print after we checked in.

‘When we found out, we couldnt believe they were charging for it, but obviously they are. You would have thought they would give us a bit of notice.

More passenger misery was reported on Twitter this morning after customers were forced to unpack their bags 

More passenger misery was reported on Twitter this morning after customers were forced to unpack their bags 

More passenger misery was reported on Twitter this morning after customers were forced to unpack their bags 

‘We would certainly consider other airlines now but we have limited options from Belfast and we use Ryanair because they have cheaper flights. The only other option we really have is Aer Lingus.’

Maggie, a 67-year-old retired civil servant, said the new restrictions were absolutely ridiculous.

She said: ‘We have a good pension but all the extra charges, they all add up. Whatever airline has the best price is what we go for. Usually the best price would be Ryanair but now, with all these add ons, it won’t always be the case.

‘When we booked a few weeks ago, it wasn’t mentioned about the new baggage charge. It was only when I checked us in yesterday when we saw it.

‘Ryanair used to let you travel with hand luggage for free. Then earlier this year, we had to have our hand luggage put in the hold, but still at no extra cost.

‘That was when they were being disuasive of you taking hand luggage rather than saying you had to pay like they are now.’

Earlier this year the airline’s CEO, Michael O’Leary, admitted that letting passengers check cabin bags at the gate was causing chaos and a ‘handling issue’ on flights.  

But he has found himself under fire from beleaguered customers today.   

In January, Ryanair began a policy which saw passengers who had not bought priority boarding permitted to take a ‘personal bag’ – such as a handbag – on board while a second, larger bag – such as a wheelie suitcase weighing up to 10kg – could be put in the hold free of charge.

But this resulted in up to 120 bags being tagged at boarding gates for each flight, meaning departures were disrupted.

Ryanair has responded by no longer allowing any luggage in the hold free of charge.

Passengers have to pay £8 to check in a 10kg bag. The previous lowest price for checked luggage was £25 for up to 20kg, which remains an option for those with heavier cases.

The maximum size of ‘personal bags’ allowed on board has been increased by 40%.

The new rules in place today have led to outrage - and confusion - among many passengers on social media 

The new rules in place today have led to outrage - and confusion - among many passengers on social media 

The new rules in place today have led to outrage – and confusion – among many passengers on social media 

Passengers who pay for priority boarding – which costs £6 – will continue to be allowed to take both a ‘personal bag’ and small suitcase as hand baggage.

Ryanair believes some customers may prefer the £8 checked luggage option because they ‘do not want to drag a wheelie case through airport security.’

It claimed most passengers will be unaffected by the changes, as 30% already buy priority boarding and a further 30% travel with only a ‘personal bag’.

Some check-in staff suspended the new charge at boarding gates today, in the wake of confusion and anger among passengers. 

A spokesman said: ‘While our new bag policy has come in to effect today (1 Nov), we have briefed our gate agents to take a reasonable approach while customers get used to the new rules.’

Rapinder Kaur (pictured) who was travelling to Venice, said it was the 'last add on charge I can take' and that the new policy was 'very annoying'

Rapinder Kaur (pictured) who was travelling to Venice, said it was the 'last add on charge I can take' and that the new policy was 'very annoying'

Rapinder Kaur (left) who was travelling to Venice with her granddaughter Hannah Bennett (right), said it was the 'last add on charge I can take' and that the new policy was 'very annoying'

Rapinder Kaur (left) who was travelling to Venice with her granddaughter Hannah Bennett (right), said it was the 'last add on charge I can take' and that the new policy was 'very annoying'

Rapinder Kaur (left) who was travelling to Venice with her granddaughter Hannah Bennett (right), said it was the ‘last add on charge I can take’ and that the new policy was ‘very annoying’

Rapinder Kaur was travelling from London Stansted to Venice with her 14-year-old daughter Hannah Bennet today.

The 54-hear-old, from Canterbury in Kent, said: ‘This is the last add on charge I can take. It’s very annoying.

‘I would absolutely fly with another airline after these new hand luggage restrictions.

‘It is just another reason not to travel with Ryanair. It would have cost us another £40 to sit together in total so we are seated in different parts of the plane. 

‘Then there’s the late check in fee so if we have problems with our WiFi at the hotel in Venice, we could be charged another £55 on top of we have to check in at the airport.

‘But we are just going to have to take that risk. We booked through Thomas Cook and didn’t realise that we’d be flying with Ryanair. I usually avoid them.’

The airline's CEO, Michael O'Leary, has found himself at the centre of a social media storm 

The airline's CEO, Michael O'Leary, has found himself at the centre of a social media storm 

The airline’s CEO, Michael O’Leary, has found himself at the centre of a social media storm 

A statement on the airline’s website read: ‘Main benefits of this new policy will be reduced flight delays and cheaper checked bag option. 

‘Pack more liquids into a 10kg checked wheelie bag. Walk to the boarding gate hands free.’

Ryanair insists it does not expect to make more money from the new rules, as it will lose revenue from passengers with checked bags switching from the £25 fee to the £8 option.

RYANAIR’S FEES IN FULL 

This graphic shows how Ryanair’s added charges have ramped up over the years and how much they are hitting passengers in the pocket

This graphic shows how Ryanair’s added charges have ramped up over the years and how much they are hitting passengers in the pocket

This graphic shows how Ryanair’s added charges have ramped up over the years and how much they are hitting passengers in the pocket

Extra legroom seats (row 1, 2 and 16-17) –  €15.00 / £15.00  

Front seats (rows 2 – 5) – €13.01 / £13.01 

Standard Seats (rows 6-15 and 18-33) – €4.00 / £4.00  

Boarding card re-issue fee – €20 / £20

Priority boarding from (per person/per one way flight) – from €5.00 / £5.00 (An increased charge is applicable for priority boarding on selected routes.)

Airport check-in fee – €55 / £55 

Infant fee – €25 / £25 (per infant/per one way flight – must be under two years for both outbound and return flight)

Infant/child equipment (car, booster, travel cot) – €15 / £15 online and €25 / £25 at the airport 

Bike – €60 / £60 online and €75 / £75 at the airport 

Large sports item – €55 / £55 online and €65 / £65 at the airport 

Sports equipment – €35 / £35 online and €40 / £40 at the airport 

Ski equipment – €45 / £45 online and €50 / £50 at the airport 

Golf clubs – €35 / £35 online and €40 / £40 at the airport 

Musical instrument – €55 / £55 online and €65 / £65 at the airport 

Flight change fees – from €35 – €65 online and €50 – €95 at the airport 

Name change fee per passenger – €115 / £115 online and €160 / £160 at the airport

Government tax refund administration fee per passenger – €20 / £17 

Booking fee at the airport – €20 / £20 

Therapeutic oxygen reservation fee – €55 / £55 

Missed departure fee – €100 / £100 

Hold fare fee – €3.00/£3.00  

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *