Posts: 3403
Joined: Mon Dec 10, 2001 12:34 am

Shocking Open Letter From Ryanair Pilots - Fake?

Fri Jun 28, 2002 4:21 am

This was posted today on a German forum - could it be true or is it just a fake by someone disliking Ryanair (the language is a bit awkward but who says that flight deck are all potential noble prize winners for literature) ? Very disturbing if only some of the facts are true - has anybody heard anything that would confirm some of the stories ?



We are a group of pilots employed by Ryanair in Ireland who are tired and scared of the way this company is being run and operated. We have now made a decision to go out and let the public know of the terrible circumstances that governs within this airline! (If we at all should call this an airline?)

The following report is not made to harm ANY persons as revenge etc. but simply to let the public and the respective authorities in the countries this company is using the airspace & facilities to know WHAT they are or will be dealing with!

We do prefer at this stage to be totally anonymous as the job market for pilots at the moment is a bit tight and also considering the non-moral & ethic reactions this company is capable to perform against us if our names comes up!

We must emphasize that these conditions that is about to be described IS NOT COMMON among SERIOUS airlines and that passengers should NOT be afraid to travel with respective charter & regular airlines in the futures! These terrible conditions are only to be found in some of the companies that SOLELY operates on the low cost principle and therefore wants to save money in ANY WAY & to ANY PRICE!!

As professional airline pilots we do feel the responsibility to let you all know the following facts about RYANAIR:


In February 2002, 4-6 cabin-crew with base in Hahn, Germany were caught there while they where using illegal drugs in their hotel room by a Ryanair supervisor. 6 other cabin-crews where also after this investigated by Ryanair for the same reason. As far as we know was this NEVER reported to any official authority!!


In March 2002 illegal drugs was found onboard one of the company's airplanes by a coincidence by one of the cabin-crews while this airplane was airborne. The drug was cannabis and concealed in a passengers bag.

The most horrible about this is that this bag had been onboard the aircraft for 24 hours without ANYBODY had discovered it taken into consideration that the cabin-crews ALWAYS are obligated to do a "security check" of the entire cabin before EVERY flight!! THIS COULD EASILY HAVE BEEN A BOMB!! The reason for why this happened is VERY simple: RYANAIR wants to save money and has therefore made the turnarounds between each flight to be MAXIMUM ONLY 25 MINUTES! This does NOT give the crews enough time to do their job satisfactory as they also VERY OFTEN are dead tired as they are forced to work to much! Second reason is that by offering such low cost tickets this airline will receive a LOT of passengers who belongs in the category "criminals, half-criminals, drug addicts/abusers & persons with severe behavior problems" as these category usually cannot afford the price of a regular airline-ticket. As the Schengen-Deal became valid these persons also have the opportunity to travel between the countries without being checked for passports or luggage!!


At the base in Hahn, Germany has several young First Officers who are very inexperienced, scared of losing their job and Ryanairs non-ethic & none moral reaction towards them self & with only 300-400 flying hours told other Captains that they have flown with the Base Captain in Hahn & other Captains out of this base who have showed up for flying duty & and performed this duties under influence &smelling alcohol after a nights party with just 2-3 hours sleep!


Both pilots & cabin-crews are performing their duties when they are very ill because they do not dear to call in **** as Ryanair fires them directly if they are (in Ryanairs eyes!) absent too much from work just because of this reason!! Flying personnel has been fired after they have been absent from work only a few days!

This results also in extremely low safety factor as these pilots & cabin crews often are so **** when they are flying that their attention and concentration is below ANY standard.


In Hahn, Germany did Ryanair station several Eastern-European pilots to work who they new did not have any visa for Germany. These illegal personnel where working in Germany from February 2002 until at least May 2002


The working hours are so long and hard (pilots are flying 100:00 hours block in 28 days the whole time!)& the turnarounds between the flights so short (maximum 25 minutes!) that many of the cabin-crews do not have time to eat, and if they got some time they are forced to either stay and eat their food or sit on the floor in the pantry like dogs AS THEY ARE NOT ALLOWED TO SIT DOWN!


A pilots union or other unions does not exist in Ryanair. If somebody tries to start such a union will they be fired immediately.

In the last 7-8 months the company has "employed" very young and inexperienced copilots mostly from Holland. These pilots has paid their own Boeing 737 type rating and have huge bank loans! They had of course very little chance to get a job in an airline after the period of 11th of September 2001. Ryanair saw of course this and offered these persons a position where they had to sign a letter that they would NOT be a member of any pilot-union as long as they worked for Ryanair!

They are also working for a such low salary (if we can call it a salary!) that it is categorized slavery.


Ryanair Administrator, Mr. O'Leary has every monday a meeting in the company's head quarter in Dublin with his sub-administrators. During this meetings Mr. O'Leary behaves very violent & abusive and physically throws bottles and chairs on the other individuals in the meeting-room!

This psychopatic tendencies by O'Leary goes like a red tread trough the company as the WHOLE system is run on the concept MANAGEMENT BY FEAR!! With other words is this company run by threatening and scaring their employees to do what the company tells them to do, IF NOT...

This results in that EVERYBODY are watching and reporting everybody, which again results in that operating personnel do work under constantly fear of saying something wrong or doing the smallest mistake!!


At the base in Stansted the Captains are NOT allowed to land with more than 3400kg of fuel in the tanks after a round trip to an other destination by the Base Captain. If it is discovered that the airplane has landed with more than the above described amount of fuel, the captain onboard receives a "warning letter" there it stays that this has been notified. If this Captain receives 3 letters like this he is subject to be fired!!!


Ryanair is constantly behind with the payment of salaries & sector payment to the flying personnel! EVERY month there are many pilots & cabin-crews who are subjects to this! The payments are always LESS than they should be & NEVER opposite!? Other expenses that employees personally has paid out on behalf of Ryanair & as following the company shall pay back to their employees asap. is delayed obviously in the hope that these poor persons shall give up the hard work of getting this money back or simply forget it!!


A lot of flying personnel is forced by Ryanair to pay their income tax to Ireland even if they are based and living in Germany Belgium, England etc.

It seems that Ryanair has bargained a deal with the Irish Authorities "underneath the table" that in order to be allowed to operate in that criminal manner they are doing without any questions the Irish State is receiving tax money from Ryanair's employees! This is economical crime and should also be investigated by EU and the respective countries involved!!


Since the 11th of September 2001 Ryanair has employed several pilots, cabin crews and other personnel and has given them VERY low salaries compared to those who was employed before this date!

This results in the fact that for instance Captains are flying with copilots who are earning/receiving up to 30% more salary than the COMMANDER OF THE AIRCRAFT???!!!


The company is so short of personnel, both flying & non-flying personnel, just so they can save money, that EVERYBODY are constantly exhausted, tired & and in a bad mood, which again results in a constant rate of failure to perform the duties correctly among these persons!!

Ryanair employs personnel who are very young, inexperienced & and with extremely low salaries without giving them the proper training & time to perform their duty correct! These persons are VERY often set into sub- administrative positions where they OF COURSE are doing a lot of mistakes and again fired because of this! New inexperienced persons are set to do the same jobs & the same is happening again!! ALL OF THIS IN ORDER TO SAVE MONEY!!???


Ryanair's criminal business structure creates misery and destroys the whole aviation market if this company is not stopped! The sequence of the destruction will most likely look like this

- Ryanair is creating a destructive and negative trend there highly educated pilots & other personnel with a lot of responsibility and hard work hanging on their shoulders are under-payed and degraded status vice which again results in lower ambitions and moral among effected persons & with this comes REDUCED SAFETY IN THE AIR!!!

a.. Other airlines and establishments are losing a lot of money,
b.. personnel is forced to quit their jobs because the airlines cannot afford to have them employed,
c.. families do get into financial difficulties and might end up losing their homes etc.

We do hope with the cooperation of the media, different unions and Official Authorities to put an end to Ryanairs destructive operations once and for all!!

Yours sincerely

angry & frightened Ryanair pilots.

Sabena 690
Posts: 6065
Joined: Sat Feb 02, 2002 12:48 am

RE: Shocking Open Letter From Ryanair Pilots - Fake?

Fri Jun 28, 2002 4:37 am

Hoho, if this is possible, Ryanair will not be around for long anymore.

I think I am sleeping, this can't be possible!!  Wow! Wow! Wow!

Can anyone confirm this please?

chock head
Posts: 146
Joined: Tue May 07, 2002 1:11 pm

RE: Shocking Open Letter From Ryanair Pilots - Fake?

Fri Jun 28, 2002 4:46 am

Sounds like complete BS to me. Someone is disgruntled and I have a hard time believing that a group of pilots would post that anywhere, even anonymously. I find it curious that all of the points seem to be summarized with the closing point that Ryanair is destroying the airline market. Where are the facts ? A total smear campaign is what this is. Having worked in a union and non union shop I really hope that a union or union organizer is not behind that post. Unfortanately the inference seems to be: Low cost = non union = unsafe which just is not true.
This sucks anyway you look at it.
Posts: 1064
Joined: Fri Feb 04, 2000 4:45 am

RE: Shocking Open Letter From Ryanair Pilots - Fake?

Fri Jun 28, 2002 5:10 am

This is terribly written! It has to be fake. Also, open letters of this sort make the news and papers and what not. I'm pretty sure this is a fake.
Posts: 666
Joined: Sat Dec 08, 2001 10:20 am

RE: Shocking Open Letter From Ryanair Pilots - Fake?

Fri Jun 28, 2002 5:31 am

The individual writing this only has the most tenuous grasp of what constitutes coherent grammar. I'd suggest it is the person behind this diatribe that is taking illegal substances - because no semi educated person would write in this illiterate fashion.

I think this is what happens when you leave fifty monkeys at fifty typewriters in a darkened room for several years ...
Posts: 634
Joined: Sun May 20, 2001 3:21 pm

RE: Shocking Open Letter From Ryanair Pilots - Fake?

Fri Jun 28, 2002 5:42 am

I always like low cost airlines like Westjet and Southwest and jetBlue, but Ryanair has always given me bad vibes- look how they treated their millionth customer giveaway winner, plus all of the talk recently of low cost airlines that cut corners, it's all very unseemely.
Someday, we'll look back at this, laugh nervously, and then change the subject.
Posts: 6945
Joined: Sun Oct 21, 2001 5:29 am

RE: Shocking Open Letter From Ryanair Pilots - Fake?

Fri Jun 28, 2002 8:14 am

because no semi educated person would write in this illiterate fashion.
unless he has on the smack himself? Big grin .

If it is discovered that the airplane has landed with more than the above described amount of fuel, the captain onboard receives a "warning letter" there it stays that this has been notified. If this Captain receives 3 letters like this he is subject to be fired!!!
Now I'm all for flexible labour markets but...lol what bollocks.

User avatar
Posts: 18972
Joined: Fri Nov 23, 2001 7:29 am

RE: Shocking Open Letter From Ryanair Pilots - Fak

Fri Jun 28, 2002 9:37 am

If it is genuine you have to worry about the standard of education of the pilots.

"conditions is not common"? perhaps they mean "conditions are not common."

"dear to call in sick?" How about "dare to call in sick".

"subjects to this"? No - "subject to this."

I could go on. And on. But why bother?


aeternum nauta
Posts: 879
Joined: Sat Nov 17, 2001 11:54 am

RE: Shocking Open Letter From Ryanair Pilots - Fake?

Fri Jun 28, 2002 12:37 pm

The grammar can be excused because with it being in a German forum, i would assume it was written by a German crew member... trust me, learning German grammar for English students is easy, its not as complex. However, for Germans learning English it is easily twice as hard.

but, aside from that, i am not sure if to believe it or not.
I have not always been a fan of the low-costs, with some exceptions.
Ryanair, not my favorite airline, but not one i 'hate' as i have never flown them, but some of the things i hear of them give me a pessimistic view of the company.

If this is 100% genuine material, then Ryanair will suffer at the hands of many government investigations, Ireland, Germany, and probably the EU will all want a closer look. And frankly, this may be the final nail, if proven to be true, because if the governments dont damage the company, then the consumer might, and if you lose the consumers trust, you lost yourself a business.

We will see.
Posts: 1613
Joined: Sat Apr 06, 2002 3:23 pm

RE: Shocking Open Letter From Ryanair Pilots - Fake?

Fri Jun 28, 2002 2:34 pm

If this was genuine, my bet is that they would use the same factual claims but with a much more professional demeanor. The pilots would then identify themselves to a member of the media, who could then verify who they were, but protect their identities. Their are plenty of people in the media, etc. who would then do their screaming for them. Many whistleblowers have done this in many industries.

Was this letter publicised first on the buliten board or was it first sent to the media in the manner described above?
If it was spotted on the buletin board first, it is a fake. Almost 100% certain. A trained pilot who really believed all the allegations he is posting would not first go to an internet board - it would be a waste of time and credibility. This also does not read like a group complaint letter - these tend to be much more measured, deliberate and restrained in tone. It reads like something from one frustrated individual. Groups tend to write much more conservatively then Individuals - as anyone who reads comittee reports can attest.
Posts: 256
Joined: Thu Jun 07, 2007 11:46 pm

RE: Shocking Open Letter From Ryanair Pilots - Fake?

Fri Jun 28, 2002 5:43 pm

Is this letter true or fake?

(A friendly remark for JAT, Barcode, Donder10 and Mariner.  Smile ) Grammar and tone of the letter are not very good English: Well, English is not my mothertongue and I have to admit that I would probably not have been able to write it better. The fact that "incidents" in Hahn (Germany) are mentioned a few times makes me suppose that the author might be a German or Dutch pilot flying out of Hahn and English only his second language!

I think that this letter might be written by a handful of worried F/o's and captains who are afraid of loosing their job and want to stay absolutely anonymous and for that there is no better medium to use then an internet forum!

My guess would be that this letter is genuine, although of course I can't be sure. Anyway, I think it deserves attention and the allegations should be checked by the authorities.

There is a Dutch idiom stating "If there's a lot of smoke, there is probably a fire".

Well, there sure are a lot of rumors about Ryanair lately. I think the "fire brigade" should go to Ryanair just to make sure it not burning.

Posts: 2613
Joined: Thu Aug 10, 2000 11:05 pm

RE: Shocking Open Letter From Ryanair Pilots - Fake?

Fri Jun 28, 2002 5:57 pm

There was a BBC documentary lately that indicated that at least the level of drinking indicated in the above letter is common in also the more established carriers.

Sabena 690
Posts: 6065
Joined: Sat Feb 02, 2002 12:48 am

RE: Shocking Open Letter From Ryanair Pilots - Fake?

Fri Jun 28, 2002 7:00 pm

There is a Dutch idiom stating "If there's a lot of smoke, there is probably a fire".

Hehe, interesting statement Erasmus  Smile/happy/getting dizzy

That was what I was thinking too.

I hope that the authorities will do what they can, this deserves an investigation.


Posts: 900
Joined: Fri Aug 27, 1999 3:50 am

RE: Shocking Open Letter From Ryanair Pilots - Fake?

Fri Jun 28, 2002 7:21 pm

I tend to believe in the old theory....where there's smoke, there's fire. Having flown Ryanair myself, I would not be surprised at all if this was true. It was a very unsettling experience. They are more like a bus company than an airline. I would not fly them again. Sure they are cheap, but it's all about quality.....where do you shop? Would you buy everything at K-mart, Wal-mart, Asda or Argos (depending on where you live!)? No. Some things in life are meant to be valued. Ryanair isnt one of those things. They are crap. Like a cheap wine, a cheap shirt or a cheap car. They dont last. Quality wins out.
Posts: 980
Joined: Sat Jan 27, 2001 6:53 am

RE: Shocking Open Letter From Ryanair Pilots - Fake?

Fri Jun 28, 2002 8:01 pm

Before the SAS take-over of Braathen's,several BU pilots attended a Ryanair recruitment meeting at Oslo Airport to see what they could offer in case BU folded.Not much to write home about!
The pay envisaged would be less than the unemployment benefits they would have received.Not much information was given beyond that,most of the meeting consisting of "damn BA,damn SAS,damn LH",etc.
BTW,the flight attendants are paid some £3.50 per duty hour,which most likely accounts for the 10-month average employment period for this category.
Ryanair employs a lot of non-English speaking aircrew and this certainly accounts for the rather poor grammar and syntax expressed in the message.It is also very noticable when radio transmissions call for more than the normal,standardized,phrases.
English is a language that is easy to acquire but very difficult to master,and that goes for people on this forum who obviously have English as their mother tongue.Some of the spelling that shows up occasionally make me wonder if they ever attended school!
"Luck and superstition wins all the time"!
Posts: 426
Joined: Mon Apr 02, 2001 11:32 pm

RE: Shocking Open Letter From Ryanair Pilots - Fake?

Fri Jun 28, 2002 11:00 pm

whatever the difficulties some Ryannair pilots have with speaking English - a statement of this gravity should be delivered in clear proper English. The fact that it was written in German School boy English would suggest that this is not written by any Ryannair pilot. But it could be writtien by a disgruntled flight attendant.

I think the German Unions have it in for Ryanair because their cheap and cheeful service undermine the bloated, overmanned, high cost German way of doing business (esp in the air transport! They encourage any rumour, or story to demean ryannair.

I have never had any problems with Ryanair except the longish check in. So what if it is like a bus service. I paying to get from A to B - not to be waited on by middle aged Flight attendants for drinks and coffee.

Popular Searches On Airliners.net

Top Photos of Last:   24 Hours  •  48 Hours  •  7 Days  •  30 Days  •  180 Days  •  365 Days  •  All Time

Military Aircraft Every type from fighters to helicopters from air forces around the globe

Classic Airliners Props and jets from the good old days

Flight Decks Views from inside the cockpit

Aircraft Cabins Passenger cabin shots showing seat arrangements as well as cargo aircraft interior

Cargo Aircraft Pictures of great freighter aircraft

Government Aircraft Aircraft flying government officials

Helicopters Our large helicopter section. Both military and civil versions

Blimps / Airships Everything from the Goodyear blimp to the Zeppelin

Night Photos Beautiful shots taken while the sun is below the horizon

Accidents Accident, incident and crash related photos

Air to Air Photos taken by airborne photographers of airborne aircraft

Special Paint Schemes Aircraft painted in beautiful and original liveries

Airport Overviews Airport overviews from the air or ground

Tails and Winglets Tail and Winglet closeups with beautiful airline logos