Easter flights are safe, promises Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary amid coronavirus crisis

Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary slams ‘lunacy’ over reaction to coronavirus outbreak after airline was forced to cancel flights due to plunging bookings, but insists Easter holidays are safe

  • Michael O’Leary today said that any disruption to flying will be ‘short-lived’ 
  • But he admitted his airline has suffered no shows of around 50 per cent 
  • Also expressed fears of how the crisis will impact the wider airline industry 

Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary has promised that Easter flights are safe amid the coronavirus after the budget airline cancelled trips due to a drop in bookings.

The travel chief says that he’s confident disruption will be short lived despite expressing worries about how the Covid-19 outbreak was going to affect the industry in coming weeks.

Speaking to Sky News, he said: ‘We’ve seen no shows over last couple days of up to 50 per cent part on Italian domestic routes.

Michael O’Leary (pictured) claims that there will be no major disruption over Easter for Ryanair customers amid the coronavirus crisis 

He added: ‘The challenge for our industry is will there be casualties in the next few weeks. 

‘If there are cancellations in bookings – and there are clearly some airlines that are struggling – we think it will lead to further failures in the next couple of weeks.’

But he maintained that his airline will be able to cope with the holiday rush and said the improvement in temperature across destinations will help fight the virus, which has claimed 3,128 lives worldwide.

Pictured: A woman wearing a face mask at Terminal 5 at Heathrow Airport as the coronavirus outbreak continues

Pictured: A woman wearing a face mask at Terminal 5 at Heathrow Airport as the coronavirus outbreak continues 

‘We’re coming up to spring in Europe that will make the spread of a flu-like virus more difficult,’ he said this afternoon. 

Mr O’Leary blasted the notion of shutting down public events and praised the UK government for telling people to take sensible, preventative measures, such as washing your hands for at least 20 seconds with hot water and soap. 

‘Those kind of measures will be more effective at combating Covid 19 than for example cancelling football matches or big public events,’ he said.

‘We’re calling for calm yes there will be a decline short term in travel but I think it will be reasonably short-lived.’

It comes after Ryanair announced it would reduce the number of flight to and from Italy, from airports across Europe, by up to 25 per cent from March 17 to April 9.