Ryanair unveils new ‘business class’ service

Business Plus fare includes priority boarding, free ticket changes

Ryanair has taken another step away from its no frills, no smiles past and shown the world its new business class service which will give people who pay a premium of at least €69.99 better seats, a bigger luggage allowance and a fast track through airport security.

A quarter of Ryanair’s passengers use the airline to travel for business reasons the airline said this morning and its new Business Plus service aims to capture an even larger slice of that lucrative European business traveller pie with a suite of benefits which will also include a more flexible ticketing policy and priority boarding

However the airline will not be remodelling its strikingly blue and yellow cabins or fitting out portions of its planes with reclining seats or even installing curtains to separate the business classes from the chattering classes and the company plans to instead add value to its current services.

For instance its flexible ticketing offers unlimited flight changes and the option to change flights on the day of travel at no cost - above the cost of the Business Plus fare while premium seating will give passengers “extra leg room” and a “speedy exit”. The not-so-cheap seats will be located at the front, middle and back of the plane.


Fast-track airport security will available at select airports including Dublin, Barcelona, Brussels Charleroi, East Midlands, Liverpool, London Stansted, Manchester and Milan Bergamo.

"Our commitment to the improvement of our customer experience under our 'Always Getting Better' programme continues," said Ryanair's marketing director Kenny Jacobs.

His comments come almost exactly a year after the airline’s occasionally combustible chief executive Michael O’Leary admitted the customer-care culture at his airline was - possibly - “abrupt”.

Speaking at the the airline’s agm last September Mr O’Leary promised the airline would “try to eliminate things that unnecessarily piss people off”.

As part of the measures announced then, Mr O’Leary said Ryanar would stop fining customers whose carry-on baggage exceeds minimum sizes by a matter of millimetres. “A lot of those customer services elements don’t cost a lot of money,” he said “It’s something we are committed to addressing over the coming year.”

He was as good as his word and over the past 12 months the new ‘frills’

introduced by the airline include allocated seating, a free second carry-on bag, reduced fees, a new website, a brand new app with mobile boarding passes.

Ryanair also launched its summer 2015 schedule today and will operate 81 routes from Dublin next summer including three new routes to Brussels Zaventem, Cologne and Glasgow International airport. The number of people flying Ryanair to or from Dublin will increase by about 11 per cent to 9.2 million next year, the airline said.

Conor Pope

Conor Pope

Conor Pope is Consumer Affairs Correspondent, Pricewatch Editor and cohost of the In the News podcast