Ryanair is about to enter uncharted territory.
The airline, which is known for being one of the cheapest in Europe, recently angered customers by announcing that it will start charging for bathrooms. “The no-frills airline is working with Boeing to redesign the cabin and develop coin-operated toilets on 168 of its planes,” according to the Daily Mail. That’s right, you will pay for a bathroom the same way you for a video game.
We’ve written about several airline fees on domestic airlines, but none have gone so far as to charge for bathroom use. I sincerely hope that this doesn’t give our airlines at home any big ideas…
Besides making life harder for those with nervous bladders, Ryanair is also raising fees for all checked-in luggage during the summer months. This has been described by some papers as an “anti-family” policy, and it’s not hard to see why. Under this plan, each piece of luggage that is checked in could cost up to 20 pounds (or about $30) when prepaid online and 40 pounds ($60) when paid at the airport.
A spokesperson for Ryanair told the Daily Mail that the goal of these changes is not to aggravate customers but rather to “change passenger behavior.” They argue that most of their fliers don’t check in luggage anyway, and as for the bathrooms, this new policy will “enable us to remove two out of three of the toilets and make way for at least six extra seats on board.” Yes, I’m sure passengers will agree that having a few extra seats, which will likely get filled with crying babies, totally makes up for having to pay to pee.
Ryanair isn’t the only airline to resort to baggage fees. The American budget carrier Spirit Airlines also announced it will start charging $30 to store carry-on bags if you pay in advance online, and $45 when you pay at the airport.