January 1, 2016
Re: Issue No 2169 – Letters page: Ryanair, Europe’s favourite airline ?
Mr John Hopkins brought into prominence Ryanair’s inefficiency (January 1-7) and due to his depicted lamentable personal experience denies the carrier be attributed anybody’s favourite airline”.
Your correspondent hasn’t seen nothing yet when it comes to conquering the skies with AirBerlin (AB).
Last August the Irish “Troop Carrier” flew me from Alicante to Núrnberg €120 one way, two hours and fifteen minutes flying time, arrival ten minutes ahead of schedule. Prior to having made flight arrangements and in order to obtain a meaningful comparison I phoned AirBerliin. “Well”, the AB girl chirped, “from Alicante you’ll fly to Malle (Palma de Mallorca) where you change planes and continue with our silver/red wings right to Dusseldorf. Once you’ve arrived you stay on the aircraft which will bring you to Núrnberg at … hours. €440 one way”.
I replied: “Are you serious, six hours and thirty minutes traveling time?” The AB Fraulein: “Yeah, but consider the Americans need much more time to get a man to the moon…. and be ready for this: you’re allowed to take your pet with you, something denied by certain airlines”. I said: “My tomcat “Rommel” abhors jet planes, the field marshal only trusts “auntie Ju”, reliable Junkers 52 from the 1930s. What about the return flight?” The AB sweetie: “From Núrnberg AB is proud to take you to Berlin”. I interrupted: “oh great, last time I visited Berlin in 1965 participating in the AVUS sports car race, driving an English plated Jaguar E-Type. When visiting the Russian sector of the city I thundered down the nearly deserted Stalin- Allee only to be flagged down by Commie cops. They fined me for speeding and due to the E-Type’s racing exhaust system – for having exceeded the noise level of the East German workers’ paradise. Demanding western currency I had to pay two West German marks. “The AB lady: From Berlin AB takes you directly to Alicante…” Six hours traveling time. €420
My return flight, originating from Brussels South (Charleroi Airport), was bound for Murcia/San Javier, close to my doorstep and Jetairfly charged me €60.
The latest about Ryanair’s chief executive Mr Michael “Mick” O’ Leary I’ve learned from one of the company’s station managers, namely, that he owns a taxi licence. Whenever he is cruising on Dublin’s streets in his Rollsie, Tricky “Mick”, by outwitting his peers, is using the fast lane. No wonder, this attitude converted him into the enfant terrible of the airline industry.