Answer) Ryanair can offer flights at whatever price it likes. The prospective passenger can decide for themselves if they wish to take up what is known as the “invitation to treat”, i.e. buy the flights.
Having said that, I agree it looks absurd at first sight that adding a child to a booking increases the fare for both passengers - especially since children now pay £13 less for an economy flight within Europe from the UK, with under-12s escaping Air Passenger Duty.
I’ve just made a test booking for a Sunday evening flight from Stansted to Dublin on Ryanair and have got similar results. The way that airlines price their flights leads to frequent examples of such anomalies.
For any given flight, an airline seeks to fill as many seats as possible while extracting the highest fare possible from each passenger. Over the years, the standard technique of “yield management” has become established. It works roughly like this. The airline sells a tranche of seats to early bookers at a low fare - say £49. When they have all been sold, the price increases by £25. When that lot has also been taken up, there’s another fare rise, and so on. The airline wants to be in a position of selling the last few seats at a high fare to passengers who are desperate to travel.
If Ryanair has only one seat left at the current price, and you seek to buy two or more, the system will automatically raise the fare to the next level for everyone. This is in contrast to other airlines, which will typically average out the fare - if one is available at £149 and another at £174, it will quote a price per person of £161.50.
Report by Claudia Pritchard, London..
''BOYCOTT RYANAIR AT ALL COSTS''