Ryanair owes over €1 billion in refunds, according to various reports. The airline said there are approximately 25 million passengers who are entitled to either travel vouchers or refunds. Currently the airline is processing €10 million a month which is 1,000 times the usual level.
Ryanair Boeing 737-800 registered EI-FON. Photo by Jero Vida | AeroNewsX
The news comes days after Ryanair was forced to apologize after it told customers that by using the chargeback scheme when seeking a cash refund, they could become banned from using Ryanair in the future. The chargeback scheme allows consumers to attain a refund from their bank or building society if the service that they paid for, wasn't provided. This can also include flights and holidays. Ryanair employees were caught telling customers that the chargeback scheme was a 'fraudulent activity'. An investigation by MoneySavingExpert.com revealed that the program was not 'fraudulent' at which Ryanair responded with an apology.
In a statement to MoneySavingExpert.com, Ryanair said: "These claims are untrue. Chargebacks are not considered a fraudulent activity and Ryanair only 'blacklists' customers in confirmed fraud cases."
In a separate statement to the Mirror, Ryanair said: “For any cancelled flight, Ryanair is giving customers all of the options set out under EU regulations, including free moves and refunds in the form of cash or vouchers. The process time for cash refunds is taking longer due to the fact we are having to process 10,000 times the usual volume of cancellations and have fewer staff available due to social distancing measures."
Airlines across the globe are trying to save costs, however, with refund requests mounting, such is difficult to achieve. Ryanair, like many other airlines, is offering vouchers as an alternative to avoid refunds. Ryanair's travel vouchers offers passengers the chance to redeem it within a 12 month period - if that doesn't happen, they can always get a refund later down the line.