One of Europe’s most popular airlines, Ryanair, announced on Thursday that its Winter 2023 flight timetable will experience schedule reductions as a direct result of Boeing aircraft delivery delays during the September to December period.
The issue arose when Ryanair, expecting to receive 27 aircraft between September and December, was told that it will only receive 14 aircraft between October and December. This was caused by production delays at the Spirit Fuselage Facility in Wichita, combined with Boeing repair and delivery delays in Seattle.
In a company statement, Ryanair said that it is working with Boeing to try to accelerate deliveries in the period between January and May 2024, so that it can enter the Summer 2024 peak travel season with all 57 new Boeing aircraft deliveries as expected.
As a result of these delivery delays, Ryanair will make several adjustments to its winter 2023 schedule this week. Therefore, it has announced that it will reduce the number of Charleroi (Brussels) based aircraft by three, Dublin based aircraft by two and will reduce five aircraft across four Italian bases including Bergamo, Naples and Pisa. There will also be aircraft reductions in East Midlands, Porto and Cologne.
It is not yet known whether Malta will be affected by this scheduled reduction. However it runs a service between Malta and Charleroi that is most frequently used by individuals working at EU institutions in Brussels. All other countries, who’s flights will be disrupted, also operate to and from Malta through Ryanair.
Cancellations will take effect from the end of October and will be communicated to all affected passengers by email over the coming days. Passengers will be offered re-accommodation on alternative flights or full refunds, as they wish.
“Ryanair has no spare aircraft this winter as scheduled maintenance is necessary across our full fleet of over 550 aircraft in order to have them all serviceable for its largest ever summer 2024 schedule,” the airline said.
Michael O’Leary, Ryanair Group CEO, expressed that it is deeply regrettable that production problems in Wichita and in Seattle, “have yet again” delayed Boeing’s contracted deliveries to Ryanair this winter.
“At this early date, we do not expect these delivery delays will materially affect our full year traffic target of 185.5 million but if the delays worsen or extend further into the January-May 2024 period, we may have to revisit this figure and possibly adjust it slightly downward,” Mr O’Leary concluded.
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