Thursday, 15 September 2011
Passengers who choose to fly with Ryanair will be required to use the airline's own Mastercard in order to avoid paying booking fees from October.
Ryanair currently issue a standard 'admin fee' of £6 per one way flight if customers by with a debit, credit or Visa Electron card. Until now it has only been avoided by using a Mastercard prepaid debit card. You may now be thinking that the new Ryanair prepaid Mastercard is nothing new as it already has a similar
card in operation. However, from 1st November the new Ryanair prepaid Mastercard entitled the 'Ryanair Cash Passport' will be the only type of prepaid card that can be used. Any customers who use another type of prepaid Mastercard will be forced to pay the obligatory £6 fee.
Prepaid Mastercards are estimated to be held by 5% of the population and require consumers to load cards with money before paying for items. Martin Lewis, the nation's favourite penny pincher feels that the move could be bad news for Ryanair: "This is anti-competitive, it's an insult to loyal passengers who first got Electron cards so they could pay for free, then were forced to switch to prepaid Mastercards and are now being asked to dance again this time by getting Ryanair's own prepaid card."
Ryanair have defended the move to launch its own prepaid Mastercard and a spokesman said that:"We have suffered from criticism for some time that customers do not know where to get prepaid Mastercards. So we decided that to make it easier for customers they could start getting them from our website."
Last week, results from research by Which? found that consumers are paying an estimated £265,000 a day in debit card surcharges for booking plane tickets.
Posted by Tom Warsop at 08:59