Michael O’Leary: Ryanair passenger numbers to decline by 5m in March

Michael O’Leary says he expects Ryanair passenger numbers to decline by 5 million passengers in March 2020 due to Coronavirus,

“The second half of March is essentially grounded so there will be a hit of about five million passengers on our end of year results. We were expecting to carry about 12 million passengers in March and it looks like, because we cannot fly, we will carry between six and seven million. So there will be a small hit in March for the year end, and we don’t know what happens after that.”

“We are currently operating about 20 aircraft, a reduced service schedule between Ireland and Britain, Ireland and Belgium and Ireland and Portugal. It could be one and two flights per route per day. We are operating on the assumption that nothing will fly in April and May.”

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“Italy is recording the smallest number of new infections because  they clamped down early. Who knows here, but if you follow the Chinese precedent Italy will probably sooner than the UK but nobody really knows.”

“We are doing our utmost to keep the aircraft and the crews current so that if we can go back flying with reasonable speed we are ready to go with some kind of truncated schedule. it depends on which countries will open up.”

Michael O’Leary: “The Chinese experience suggests flights will start to open after a two to three month period. If we follow the Chinese experience, the airlines are back flying in China again but for the next two weeks it is about a fifty per cent schedule.” 

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“We talked to government yesterday. We are trying to operate some medical flights for the government at the moment to China.  We are also doing rescue flights for other governments but the number of rescue flights is nearly down to zero. The governments have most people back where they want to be.”

“We all have to hunker down and see what happens for the next two to four weeks and see what happens.”


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