I'm a Ryanair cabin crew but i have to remain anonymus for my own protection.
I worked for this airline for quite some time now, i'm based in Italy and i believe it's
time to talk about our working conditions.
We can't contact unions and this point is stated in our contract but we would like to
use the opportuniy that you offered us to give you some information about our
In these years I've read many articles on magazines and newspapers about Ryanair
but often they are inaccurate. There's only one information that came out frequently
and it's truthful: Ryanair disrespect employees.
As I mentioned before, we are not allowed to spread information about our company
nor to contact the union. "Don't wash your dirty linen in public" is the motto. If you fail to comply with this rule you face dismissal for gross misconduct.
As a consequence you feel solitude and fear.
Ryanair was never open to exchange of views, negotiations and debates. When we
had the chance to speak with managers, we never felt understanding from them. The
only offer that we always receive is to resign if we don't like something and our dignity
and professionalism are affected by. For Ryanair we are a staff number and a crew
code; nobody keeps you here if you are unhappy, even though you are a great cabin
The company policy is to earn the most saving the most. If one leaves, another two
will be hired paying the training (about 2000 euro and you get back 1200 euro if you
stay for at least 1 year). Our misery is basically part of their business.
Colleagues are often the only way to vent, even if the reign of terror established by
the Company sometimes "kills" the relationships and the trust which are normally
building up in a working place. This because Ryanair push us to report each other.
In my opinion this is a very dangerous system, as it can be used against weakest
people. It produces discontent, hard feelings and hate, it encourages individualism
and it produces stress.
Another issue that we have to face is the strong pressure that the Company puts on
us, for example with the on-board sales, considered by Ryanair as a very important
part of their business strategy, and basically our main duty.
We have targets to reach every day, which include duty free products, scratch cards,
from few weeks food and in the large an average spend.
At the end of the duty we face a debriefing. If we didn't sell enough we have to explain
the reasons to our supervisor, which usually disregard the amount of stress which
faced the crew in the ten or even twelve hours of duty. When you are at the bottom of
the monthly sales chart, you receive a letter where they ask you to improve your
performances or they will reconsider your position.
Fear affect mainly the cabin service supervisors, always afraid to be demoted or
called for explanations by the managers. They go to work worried and they make
junior's working day (cabin service agents) a nightmare. Their only thought is to
indulge Company's requests and to avoid bad reports from mistery passenger. Their
aim is to sell, sell sell and it doesn't matter if the crew had 5 minutes during the ten
hours of duty for a refreshment.
Fatigue and stress give rise to rudeness, arrogance, presumption and, as a
consequence, conflicts. The crew should behave like a team and should always be
ready to react to any problem which could arise on board, main role of the cabin
This modus operandi produces discord, anger, anxiety. The opposite of what we need
Ryanair, like many other companies, uses mystery passengers to check crew
performances on board but what it may looks like a normal instrument of surveillance,
in this airline becomes an instrument of punishment and psychological torture. The
mystery passenger in Ryanair is a simple cabin crew, a colleague named by the
company without any kind of different training, whose assignment is to check how
much and in which way the crew is selling things on board. They are not interested in
safety procedure and they are required to point mainly to the negative aspects of
Probably our managers forgot the foundation of business economics: workforce is one
of the fundamentals of a successful firm. Unhappy employees lead to low productivity
and unhappy customers. Unhappy customers lead to loss of earnings.
For new cabin crew, hired after 2011, the situation is even worst.
In general, you start your career in Ryanair signing a contract with an agency and you
are paid for every hour of flight; you don't get any basic salary. Since 2012, social
insurance has to be paid in the country where we are based. In Italy we pay
contributions to INPS; part is on us and part is on the Company. This amount of
money is higher than what we used to pay in Ireland, so Ryanair offered a lower
contract (12% less) to new cabin crew, in order to cover the loss.
We all do the same job, but new hired earn much less.
During a meeting, this situation was brought to the attention of a manager. He
answered that we are happy the way it is, otherwise many of us would have already
resigned. And so no pay increase was given.
Probably, if 40 people would leave tomorrow, he would say that unhappy crew left the
Company, so still no pay increase required.
In Ryanair, you are allowed to be sick but the Company won't be happy about it. Flu or
strong cold are not enough to call sick. If you get sick 3 times in 6 months you have to
face a meeting, even if your illness is certified by a doctor.
To avoid problems, many colleagues are coming to work sick.
When you are sick you have to call crew control and tell them exactly which symptoms
and disease you have. The same day you have to fill in a self certificate, writing once
again about your sickness in details, and fax it to some offices in Dublin. There's no
department which take care of this private things and you never know who's going to
One year and half ago we were asked to vote for a four years agreement, a pay deal.
The main points were new roster and pay increase. I remember some articles on the
newspapers stating that the Company found an agreement, which satisfied both parts,
even if there are no Unions supporting cabin crew. False.
In that circumstance there wasn't any negotiation. They asked for proposals to all the
bases but they never considered our requests.
They gave us two choices: same roster (5-2 5-3) and pay increase or new roster (6-2
6-3), more tiring, and no pay increase.
Basically, they gave us one choice.
In order to address the lack of Union, the management established the role of ERC, to
represent the cabin crew. When a situation arise, we can talk to them and they report
directly to Dublin.
Even in this case there a big issue: Ryanair isn't open to listen and negotiate.
What is more representatives are mainly cabin crew, working with the same shifts as
everyone else. They conduct this extra duty in their free time.
A real Union would be a great help in dealing with all the problems that we have in
Ryanair. It would bring a better communication with the management and between
bases. It would help us when there's a new law, in Italy on in Europe, when the
Company leave us alone. It would make us feel more respected and protected.
We urgently need a collective labour agreement which includes minimum salary, fair
duties, equal treatment for cabin crew in Europe. Our needs are as important as
We are not asking for inopportune benefits or salaries. We only ask for rules which
give us the opportunity to work peacefully.
We would need an Italian contract, to have finally a clear idea about our rights and
duties for fiscal and legislative aspects. Too many times we are confused about which
law applies, if Irish or Italian, and nobody is able to clarify it.
We ask, to union and istitutions:
• the draft, in a reasonably short time, of a European collective labour
agreement for our profession
• associations, with the aim to verify the procedure of an airline, which gives
same importance to employer and employees
• reasonable duty time, considering the working place, the working hours, the
effect of this profession on the body and the importance of the rest between
• clarification of "rest time" to avoid to receive phone calls from the Company
between two shifts
• clarification about methods used to select new hired and to choose employee
for an advancement
Thank you for reading.
Have a nice day
Ryanair cabin crew
A big thank you to this Ryanair cabin crew member.This reports comes from a cabin crew member who has a Ryanair contract.Only around 1000 to 12000 have a Ryanair contract, which if this is not bad enough,4000 cabin crew at Ryanair are contracted through third party Crewlink Ireland Ltd set up by Ryanair and Workforce International.These 4000 are exploited at every level in their work place with depression why could lead to suicide.
Ryanair management are SCUM and they are good at their game.Safety of passengers and health of crew is not a priority, PROFIT IS..Ask yourself are you happy, as the paying public to continue using Ryanair knowing they treat their cabin crew so bad.
YOU STILL WANT TO FLY WITH THEM. ......