Ryanair warning to 50,000 passengers as 300 flights cancelled

Photo shows a woman at Ryanair desk
Hundreds of Ryanair flights have been cancelled at short notice -Credit:REX/Shutterstock

Ryanair has cancelled over 300 flights affecting thousands of passengers from the UK. The airline has issued a warning to 50,000 of its passengers who will be affected by last minute cancellations.

The decision is in response to air traffic control strikes in France today, April 25, however most of the disrupted passengers are not flying to or from France. Most of the axed flights were due to fly over French airspace en route to other destinations, such as from the UK to Greece, Spain and Italy.

Ryanair claims that France has 'failed to protect overflights during its national air strikes' and has called on the EU to take urgent action to keep Europe's skies open. Warnings have been issued in Spain, Britain's favourite holiday destination, and people flying out of the country this Thursday have been told to expect delays.

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The Association of Airlines said that Spain will likely bear the brunt of the French strikes and warned travellers that around half of flights taking off today can expect some kind of delay.

Ryanair’s CEO Michael O’Leary said: “French air traffic controllers are free to go on strike, that's their right, but we should be cancelling French flights, not flights leaving Ireland, going to Italy, or flights from Germany to Spain or Scandinavia to Portugal.

"The European Commission under Ursula von der Leyen has failed for five years to take any action to protect overflights and the single market for air travel. We're again calling on her to take action to protect overflights which will eliminate over 90% of these flight cancellations."

The airline boss wants the EU Commission to protect French overflights by law during air traffic control strikes as they do in Greece, Italy and Spain and to allow Europe's other air traffic control systems to manage flights over France while strikes are going on.