Econostrum | Economic News in the Mediterranean



Ryanair to close its Toulouse-Blagnac base and reduce its flights in Spain and Portugal

Ryanair reduces its frequencies in winter (photo: BL)
Ryanair reduces its frequencies in winter (photo: BL)
FRANCE. Ryanair announces, Thursday 15 October 2020 by a press release, the closure of its base located at Toulouse-Blagnac airport from November 2020 to March 2021.  Two Boeing 737s have been based there since October 2019, usually serving twenty-three destinations (14 today).

This decision is part of a set of measures designed to minimise losses during this Covid-19 period. Thus the low-cost airline will also close its bases in Cork and Shannon in Ireland and "considerably reduce the number of aircraft" in those located in Spain, Portugal, Germany and Austria (Vienna).

On the other hand, Ryanair does not specify whether or not the opening of a base at Beauvais in December 2020 with two planes posted, announced in September 2019, was maintained or not.

Usually, the Irish company reduces its capacity during the winter season, but this year it will drop by 60% against 40% in 2019. However, it will maintain 65% of its winter route network and will therefore play on reduced frequencies. It plans to operate with a load factor of 70%. Michael O'Leary, its managing director, refers to "the poor management of air flights in the European Union" to justify this.

At the same time, Ryanair is "inevitably going to have to introduce more unpaid leave and job sharing this winter at bases where we have agreed on reductions in hours and pay, but this is a better long-term solution than mass job losses," Michael O'Leary points out. He added that "there will unfortunately be more layoffs in the few bases (...) where we don't have the security of a labour agreement and pay cuts are the only alternative".

Frédéric Dubessy

Thursday, October 15th 2020

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