Of all the animals of prey, man is the only sociable one.
Every one of us preys upon his neighbour, and yet we herd together.
The Beggar's Opera: John Gay

Thursday 28 April 2011

Turning the tables on Ryanair

Typical! You wait ages for a Rynair story and then two come at once.

Picture the scene; a jet-full of Ryanair passengers from Milan are being invited to empty their pockets of cash. O'Leary's finest may not yet have resorted to holding their clientele upside-down and shaking them, but they're doing their level best.

And along with the assortment of snacks and beverages, they bring round the scratchcards at 2 euros a pop - it's all grist to the Ryanair mill. Only this time something unusual happens.

'Mamma mia!' exclaims a passenger, 'I have won a car!' Sure enough, the ticket is a winning one and the prize a car worth £11,500. The other passengers are craning their necks to see the lucky winner when another shout goes up.

'Me too!' shouts a second passenger, brandishing another winning scratchcard, and then, unbelievably, a third joins in. He too has won a car, meaning Ryanair will supply prizes worth £34,500.

I imagine the other passengers immediately demanded scratchcards in their turn. After all, the average win should be one car every month across the whole of Europe until what Ryanair calls a 'printing error' intervened.

Well, it's about time the biter was bitten: around a quarter of the airline’s annual earnings are generated by 'ancillary revenues' - including the notorious check-in fees, booking fees and luggage charges. It's good to see someone getting something out of them for a change.


  1. Someone ought to explain basic statistics to Ryanair. If you have this kind of thing it does not invariably work out evenly or according to plan. Just as in the Lottery one week there are no winners, sometimes one and other times half a dozen.

  2. Demetrius, I have to admit that I have long since forgotten the equations needed to calculate the odds of three passengers on a flight winning the top prize, even if I did have the figures.

    The fact that they can be calulated means the event is possible, but Occam's razor might suggest that a cock-up at the printers is more likely - of course, there could always be a practical joker in the works too.


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