And Mr O’Leary recommended flying mid-week instead of weekends to avoid queues. He said: “This problem will persist, particularly at airports like Heathrow and Gatwick, throughout the summer.
Staff shortages are affecting air traffic control, baggage handling and security and, despite months to recruit new workers, airport and airline bosses have failed to do so.
Critics say the industry laid off too many workers during the Covid shutdowns.
But yesterday (Tuesday) Mr O’Leary appeared to blame the hard-working Brits.
“There are hundreds of thousands of jobs in the UK that, frankly, British workers don’t want to do,” he said.
About 99 percent of Ryanair flights are taking off as scheduled – and Stansted customers are taking advantage of this the easiest.
However, it will be a “wrestling all summer long”, with no clear end in sight, he admitted.
Around 40% of Ryanair flights were delayed last weekend due to air traffic control issues and baggage handling delays.
Dozens of holidaymakers were pictured struggling with massive queues in Manchester on Tuesday while leaflets at Heathrow complained of ‘obvious baggage chaos’.
Heathrow and Gatwick officials have asked airlines to cancel thousands of flights this summer as they fight to regain control.
EasyJet cut 10,000 flights to European tourist destinations, including Greece, Italy and Spain, from July to September.
It comes after the former British Airways boss said Heathrow was ‘unable to deliver the basic product they needed to deliver’.
At the annual general meeting of the International Air Transport Association in Doha, its managing director Willie Walsh said of Heathrow, Schiphol in Amsterdam and Dublin: “It is interesting to note that the three airports that I mentions in terms of significant rate increases are also the three that have seen the most disruption in recent weeks.”
“It really makes you question the managers of these airports who are not even able to deliver the basic product that they manufacture.
“I will continue to call on these airports to get their act together.”
EasyJet chief executive Johan Lundgren said he was “disappointed” that Gatwick was unable to offer its full slot schedule.
He added: “We’re in favor of some airports going out and proactively capping the numbers because they have something we don’t have: visibility into the whole operation.”
“They are better equipped to judge difficulties with air traffic control, ground handlers, etc.”
“It’s disappointing, but we still prefer them to be realistic about what they can offer so we can adapt to that.”
Simon Clarke, Chief Secretary to the Treasury, said it was ‘sensitive’ for airports to ‘review their timetables’ as this will prevent a repeat of the ‘terrible scenes’ which passengers have experienced.
He told Sky News: “What we’re seeing here is the result of the airline industry contracting massively during the pandemic and now it’s dealing with this surge in pent-up demand as things get tougher. straighten.”
“It is not resourced and staffed to meet this challenge and that is why I think it makes sense that we are starting to see some airports revise their schedules for the upcoming summer season.”
“Frankly, we can’t have a repeat of the scenes we’ve had at some of our airports for the past few weeks.”
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