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Ryanair - what do I need to know??

(34 Posts)
isitmidnightalready Sat 10-Sep-11 21:41:01


I have just booked some cheap flights on Ryanair - the initial sums increased as I went through the booking and I began to understand how they make their money. I am scared stiff of getting caught out later on - what do I need to know? Stuff like confirming flights / checking in / cabin baggage etc.. I am flying one way from Venice Marco Polo to Stansted with my dh & 3dd. Help me not to cock up and get stung for more money. ( I have seen the airport horror shows which seem to focus on discount airlines... eek!!)

I would say I am a ryanair virgin, but that might confuse...

Doodlez Sat 10-Sep-11 21:45:00

You need to watch THIS youtube video before you go any further with Ryandespair.

acatcalledfelix Sat 10-Sep-11 21:52:46

Make sure your cabin baggage is the right size, not too big (there are measurements on the website).

It won't cost you anything, but remember that you have to check in on line BUT have to queue to check in any check-in baggage. We queued for over an hour earlier this year, and missed getting our priority bording that we'd paid extra for, grrr.


40notTrendy Sat 10-Sep-11 22:02:19

Check the t&cs well and follow them. Accept them for what they are. Don't bank on having room to stash your hand luggage. They are good at getting you from A to B. But that's it!

pud1 Sat 10-Sep-11 22:05:53

I flew with them last year on a last min holiday. I was expecting much so was not disappointed. They are very strict on the size of carry on luggage but as we were last to board they still did not have any storage left so we had to travel with out bag between out legs. Luckily we did not have the kids with us so was not too bothered. I would just advise that you give yourself enough time to be at the front og the boardig que.

TastyMuffins Sat 10-Sep-11 22:15:11

If you don't have EU passports, you need your boarding pass stamped so need to queue up even if you check in online and have no checked in luggage. Friend forgot and got turned away at the gate and couldn't get stamped and back on time, had to rebook at much higher price!

Sometimes the carry on luggage is weighed, sometimes it is checked for size and sometimes they don't check at all! If your DCs run all over the place dashing back and forward, it is possible to distract staff and get away with an extra piece of carry on, ie 'This bag? It belongs to my kid up there?', DC further ahead in queue with others, staff not really sure how many people, how many bags in party and unable to see the DC already holding a bag! If you think your bags may be a little heavier or larger, ensure your DC's don't feel the need to weigh them or shove them in the sizer thingy and you may never be asked.

Explain to the DCs that you are not buying anything on the plane (I said we didn't have 'Ryan Air Money' - naughty lie I know), they will be starving and thirsty when the menu cards are handed round so have some food and drink with you to -shut them up- tide them over.

Remember the liquids rules for carry on luggage.

CestTout Sat 10-Sep-11 22:23:08

Treat it like a bus, get to the airport early if you are checking in luggage, if you haven't purchased priority try to head to the gate when announced that way you will be on and pretty much garuntee seats together, echo other posters about hand luggage size, weight. No additional bags, even handbags all must be in one piece of hand luggage. Take food and drink on with you (note they do not allow you to take hot drinks on board). Can you tell I fly every six weeks with them!?! Hope that helps

isitmidnightalready Sun 11-Sep-11 13:16:13

Thank you all - this is very helpful. Not all doom and gloom, if I am prepared, by the sound of it. I shall printout the T&C's to make sure we don't fall foul of them. If we don't get seats together, I might try the trick someone mentioned recently about asking for a sick bag for the child when the doors close to try to get someone to swap seats.. hee ! hee! Don't know if I could keep a straight face!

Next question - do I need to check in online ?( could be tricky as we will be on holiday by then) Or can I just turn up to check in normally - I guess this may be written inthe T&C's.

Cheers for the ideas - any more would be welccme - forewarned is four-armed, or sommat like that.

acatcalledfelix Sun 11-Sep-11 13:53:22

I think, that with Ryanair, you do have to check in online or they charge you extra. One of their many joyous ways to get more cash out of you!. We've always managed to find an internet cafe or have done it from the hotel, and sometimes from far less developed placed than Venice!

AttilaTheMeerkat Sun 11-Sep-11 15:03:49

Ruinair; cheap but not always cheerful and with t and c designed to outwit the most determined of passengers.

You will need to check in online and print out the boarding passes prior to departure. Ensure too that the boarding pass is fully legible because they will charge you if not. Ryanair charge passengers some considerable amount (think its in the area of £40 per passenger) to print out boarding passes if they arrive at the airport without them.

isitmidnightalready Sun 11-Sep-11 17:38:42

eek - I knew it was some cash extraction process I was getting in to... eighteen quid was way to cheap for flights.... thanks for the hints - any more warnings most welcome.


coccyx Sun 11-Sep-11 17:39:58

Cancel it asap

acatcalledfelix Sun 11-Sep-11 21:01:26

Remeber that unlike most airlines you don't get to board first if you have children / disabiities, so you need to get there as early as possible to make sure you are in a good place in the queue, or pay extra for priority boarding, so you can have a good chance of sitting together.

I could cope with Ryanair when it was just me and DH flying, but now we have DS, once we've paid all the extras (pretty hard to get away with just carry on baggage now), it's actually worth paying maybe a bit extra and flying with a less budget airline. Last time we had to fly, we stumped up £40 more to avoid Ryanair and it was worth it. I find flying with children pretty stressful, so don;t need the added stress of the airline making it worse!

PacificDogwood Sun 11-Sep-11 21:11:13

I am a Frequent Flyer with Ryanair <<prematurely aged>> and it is, what it is. Cheap. Crap. Gets you there.

If at all possible, check in on-line: you can do this up to 14 days in advance, so you mights be able to do both flights before you leave if you are away for less than 2 weeks.

We fly with 4 children <<masochist>> and have totally given up on paying extra for the pre-boarding nonsense as everybody seems to have got it, so it is not actually an advantage as there are so many passengers expecting to be boarded first. Most people, when they hear see us coming, step back grin.

Deffo, have your own food and drink and snackes and sweets with you.

IME, you are very likely to get seats together. It is often worthwhile boarding through the back door as less people go there and you are more likely to have a choice of seats/rows.

If you have to have an under 2 on your lap for take-off and landing, it is worthwhile sitting her between you and DH during boarind and unless the flight is totally booked there is every chance that seat will remain empty grin [ruthless].

IME flight attendents are friendly and professional, but don't exactly fall over themselves to help you.

Yy, Ryanair is very strict re weight/size limits of checked-in and carry-on luggage. If your DD is over 2 she will have her own baggage allowance of course.

Good luck!

champagnesupernova Sun 11-Sep-11 21:15:20

NB hold on to your child's hands as you go up the steps of the plane- they don't have gantries as they are too tight to pay airports for them and they have to wait for the airport to connect them, they just lower their own shonky loft ladder style things.
Handrails are at just the wrong height - I read this about a 3 y/o falling from the top of the steps to the ground.

acatcalledfelix Sun 11-Sep-11 21:24:01

Champagne that's terrifying!
Oh I definitely recommend putting an under two year old between you whilst boarding. Who in their right mind is going to want that seat unless the flight is completely full? We did this earlier this year and DS ended up with his own seat there and back, fab!

isitmidnightalready Sun 11-Sep-11 22:43:47

Thanks champagne, cat & dog. Useful hints. My kids are normally well-behaved and fine, but we may need to act up a little to clear a place for ourselves! We shall be holding on tight, well-packed and have snacks to hand.

Still looking for ideas - we're not going until half term.

isitmidnightalready Mon 12-Sep-11 18:55:41

shameless bumpity bump...

SJaneS Thu 15-Sep-11 16:22:13


I booked some Ryan Air flights last week to Stockholm for us so have spent alot of time in the last week post booking checking their absolutely draconian requirements!

key things seem to be ...
cabin luggage size - this is 55cm by 40 by 20. Having measured up the bags we had I've had to buy 2 ryanair friendly cabin bags off ebay (£9 each - ok pricey but better than the £30/50 each suitcase cost!).

all liquids in a 20cm by 20 cm or 1 litre resealable transparent bag. No liquid container must contain more than 100ml of product. Our freezer bags were too big - got 2 bags of 4 kits for 20p each + circa £1 postage.

everything must go in the cabin bag - so if you buy anything in duty free then its got to go in that bag.

good luck!!

daenerysstormborn Thu 15-Sep-11 16:26:40

when you print out the boarding passes check them against what you see on screen and make sure the barcode in particular is correct. our black ink was playing up, so all our barcodes hadn't printed out and couldn't be scanned.

was ok in the end but the printing was the one job i left in the hands of dh, never again.

Bugsy2 Thu 15-Sep-11 16:29:46


If that doesn't work go to youtube & type in Fascinating Aida Cheap flights. So funny & remarkably true!

isitmidnightalready Thu 15-Sep-11 18:43:34

Thanks - I'll go an dlook up the video now..

This is all very helpful - must go and check my bags sizes.....

PamSco Sun 18-Sep-11 11:31:12

Here's a tip for cabin baggage sizes and weights. If you have a few smaller bags - not a allowed on Ryanair - then get a stiff walled "bag for life" and put them all in that. Just make sure the bag for life fits the size limit - most do.

I came back from Krakow to UK with way too much cabin luggage. Bag size was ok but weight blew the limit. I filled my fleece pockets with the heaviest stuff and carried my books on separate - reading them. They don't weigh you so fill your pockets!

I don't mind ryanair at all. It is a basic service and they aren't a charity. I'd rather they broke their fares down honestly and had a line called "profit" however. If there are alternative providers I'll pay more to avoid if I have luggage but for weekends and short holidays they are fine.

ForYourDreamsAreChina Sun 18-Sep-11 11:38:14

Some of the airports do use the gantry things <memorises new word>

The hand luggage size limit is mahoosive. It's the next size up from the smallest wheeled trolley (IYSWIM) They say 10kilo,mine is always nearer 15. You just have to make it look as though it's light.

Ryanair is absolutely fine, flew with them last week and the staff are lovely.

They only get narky when people arrive with 24 pieces of hand luggage and try to knobble their way to the front of the priority queue when they haven't paid for it. Which is fair enough.

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