Ryanair Staff Give WordPress some lovin'

Oh yeah, a couple of Ryanair staff really love WordPress! Or maybe not. Jason Roe discovered that Ryanair’s website session handling isn’t 100% reliable. Click through to the voucher section, click back and suddenly the price of your flight is 0.00!


Unfortunately a few Ryanair staffers decided to take it upon themselves to chastise Jason for his blog post and took a dig at WordPress while they were at it.

You dont get a free flight, there is no dynamic data to render which is prob why you got 0.00. what self respecting developer uses a crappy CMS such as word press anyway AND puts they’re mobile ph number online, i suppose even a prank call is better than nothing on a lonely sat evening!!

Personally, I believe him about ryanair.com and the “dynamic data” which I presume is POST data, but they should handle these situations better. Their chief rival in Ireland, Aer Lingus show an “expired session” page at every wrong turn which is annoying but at least doesn’t lead me down the garden path of trying to buy tickets for €0.00!

Maybe Ryanair should hire Damien to give them a clue about how to play nicely online. Can’t see that happening though. They’d probably charge you €2+€5 credit card fee just to send them a refund request by tweet.

PS. Jason verified the IP addresses of the Ryanair staff. They were browsing blogs at work from their company’s designated IP range of to

Author: Donncha

Donncha Ó Caoimh is a software developer at Automattic and WordPress plugin developer. He posts photos at In Photos and can also be found on Google+ and Twitter.

37 thoughts on “Ryanair Staff Give WordPress some lovin'”

    1. I used to work for Ryanair as cabin crew.

      While I can say that outburst sounds very much like O’Leary. I’m sure he wouldn’t make fundamental mistakes such as naming it “word press” or even know what a CMS is unless explained. When he chooses to talk badly of others he makes sure to get the name right. To just say something is “crappy” isn’t a valid dig. More of a personal opinion. If Ryanair as a company chose to insult WordPress they would make more of a thorough job of it.

      As for saying “Staffers”, Unless they split the typing between them I can only see this as being 1 person.

      Every Ryanair base and their head office has open access computers for the staff to browse online while on breaks or airport-standby. Just because it’s on the defensive does not mean it was an official spokesperson of Ryanair. It could have been a single zealous member of cabin crew, human resources, a pilot, engineer or anyone at all.

      Don’t get me wrong. I moved from Ryanair to Easyjet because I hated the company. I owe nothing to Ryanair. It even makes finding another job difficult these days as getting a referance from them is like getting blood from a stone. I cannot stand seeing a company named and shamed simply because of a single person who posted something while they may have been off duty or bored behind a desk

  1. SIGH. You would think that if they were prowling blogs for mention of them, they would be doing so with hired guns who are experts in social media and public relations. This sounds fishy to me.

    Honestly, why dis WordPress when that has nothing to do with anything. That’s not spin, it’s childish and stupid.

    Thanks for spreading the word. I work with many companies to get them to understand how today’s networking and social capital works with the new social media, and none of them would ever consider representing their company accordingly. This is terribly short-sighted and some firing should be happening. If this is legit commenting and social media monitoring and responding by Ryanair, they’ve lost creditability and fans. Time to go back to school.

    1. I’ve received a number of comments to the effect that its “cheap” to use WordPress as a CMS. In fact, one of those comments was about 1,000 words long and full of profanity. Why so much animosity?

      There does seem to be an element within the developer community who view open source (WordPress in particular) as the devil – perhaps because its putting them out of lucrative (overpriced) work?

    2. Or to face reallity, blogs are wery important for one group of peaple, but the majority doesn’t even read blogs.
      And … as long as Ryan air offer the cheapest simplest flight people will carry on buying there seats

    1. Apparently, you don’t know Ryanair. They will not apologize. This is part of their do or say anything for free publicity schtick. For better or for worse, Ryanair’s entire brand is built on them being ruthless as a way to offer cheap flights.

      1. Ryan is right, they will not under any circumstances apologize. Thats why people hate them so much, they are a pain people are willing to live with due to the cheap flight prices.

  2. That is incredibly unprofessional. They probably should apologize but won’t but what they should definitely do is take a closer look at their employees who make them look bad in public. Any other company you’d probably get sacked or transferred to a department in the basement, or something.

    1. That employee probably got a bonus as he/she gave ryanair a lot of free publicity. 🙂
      This is why ryanair spends 10M on publicity and flys 60M people/year whereas aerlingus spends 60M and flys 10M

  3. C’mon people. Use of a Ryanair IP address doesn’t mean that this was done by Ryanair staff. The likelihood is that the commenter is an IT contractor working for Ryanair, if not a sub-contractor.

    What is more depressing than the disrespect for WordPress (really, who cares?) is the apparent illiteracy. Hell would have to freeze over before I’d ever hire a software developer who didn’t know the difference between they’re and their. Mr.O’Leary, we can presume, couldn’t give a ffffffffffffffffffffffffffffig.

  4. Ruinair is usefull for cheap stag weekends booked a year in advance.

    Anything else add up the costs and its cheaper to fly on a proper airline.

  5. Hi and thanks for posting this.

    I am amazed at the rudeness of some people, they could of just said ‘Thanks and we will look into the problem’.

    If the rude remarks were directed at me personally, I would go straight to the press and release my findings and then let Ryanair deal with it.

    1. Ryanair just got a lot of publicity, which seems to be only good if you happen to be Ryanair – they have nothing to lose as long as they sell the cheapest seats on their planes. For every person who swears they will never fly with Ryanair again, there are two willing to take his seat.

      The second thing Ryanair must be pleased with is that they made that ‘Blogger’ look more than foolish – well he did that to himself really – but Ryanair took full advantage.

  6. Hi alla.

    aren’t you all giving the bloggosphers to much weight. I mean 80% af all (in the western world) hasn’t even read a blogg. But för the remaining 20% is it of course an important source of information.

    Secondly, as long as Ryanair offer cheap and simmple flights, we will fly with them. Regardless of what someone had or has not written on a blog

  7. Sounds to me like one of the Ryanair web team having a dig back – unfortunately, WordPress is a pretty good CMS in my opinion… At least it doesn’t go around writing thoughtless comments after having made a fundamental coding error.

  8. Word travels fast. I heard about this at a dinner party with my fellow public relations interns at my home in Stockholm. We described this event as a screw up from a publicity perspective. Embarrassing.

  9. I just made a booking.Total price for my trip was 0:- no taxes. Then I read the blog and found out that I am probably an idiot!

  10. Can I add something about Ryanair and their Controversial advertising?

    Ryanair’s advertising is deliberately controversial, in order to generate additional free publicity for the airline. This has led to a number of complaints to the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) and occasionally court action being taken against the airline.

    Another Ryanair tactic is to make deliberately controversial statements to gain media attention. An example of this was the live BBC News interview on 27 February 2009 when Michael O’Leary, observing that it was “a quiet news day”, commented that Ryanair was considering charging passengers £1 ($1.40) to use the toilet on their flights. The story subsequently made headlines in the media for several days and drew attention to Ryanair’s announcement that it was removing check-in desks from airports and replacing them with online check-in. Eight days later O’Leary eventually admitted that it was a publicity stunt saying “It is not likely to happen, but it makes for interesting and very cheap PR”.

    Ryanair often use their advertising to make direct comparisons and attack their competitors. One of their advertisements used a picture of the Manneken Pis, a famous Belgian statue of a urinating urchin, with the words: “Pissed off with Sabena’s high fares? Low fares have arrived in Belgium.” Sabena sued and the court ruled that the advertisements were misleading and offensive. Ryanair was ordered to discontinue the advertisements immediately or face fines. Ryanair was also obliged to publish an apology and publish the court decision on their website. Ryanair used the apologies for further advertising, primarily for further price comparisons.

    Another deliberately provocative ad campaign headlined “Expensive Bastards!” compared Ryanair with British Airways. As with Sabena, British Airways disagreed with the accompanying price comparisons and brought legal action against Ryanair. However, in this case the High Court sided with Ryanair and threw BA’s case out ordering BA to make a payment towards Ryanair’s court costs. The judge ruled “The complaint amounts to this: that Ryanair exaggerated in suggesting BA is five times more expensive because BA is only three times more expensive. Accordingly, in my view, the use was honest comparative advertising. I suspect the real reason that BA do not like it is precisely because it is true.”

    Inuenndo often features in Ryanair advertisements with one ad featuring a model dressed as a schoolgirl, accompanied by the words “Hottest back to school fares”. Ryanair ran the advertisement in two Scottish and one UK-wide newspaper. After receiving 13 complaints, the advertisement was widely reported by national newspapers, generating more free publicity for the airline. The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) instructed them to withdraw the advert in the United Kingdom, saying that it “appeared to link teenage girls with sexually provocative behaviour and was irresponsible and likely to cause serious or widespread offence”. Ryanair said that they would “not be withdrawing this ad” and would “not provide the ASA with any of the undertakings they seek”, on the basis that they found it absurd that “a picture of a fully clothed model is now claimed to cause ‘serious or widespread offence’, when many of the UK’s leading daily newspapers regularly run pictures of topless or partially dressed females without causing any serious or widespread offence”.

  11. Cork, Ireland? I would have wanted to go there last December when Cork University hosted the World Universities Debate Championship with British Parliamentary format except that for the staggering 4-digit figures for the registration and the flight.

  12. Just back from hols with the family…flew with Ryanair as it was the only airline to fly to the destination. I could bore you with details of what is now an average Ryanair flight ie arrogant staff, tactics to rob us blind of our money, pandemonium to get seats with no help from staff…I could go on and on. HOWEVER…the one thing that is really bothering me is that we were ever so politely informed that from Aug every child flying with Ryanair has to have their own passport. My children are on my passport and it is legal as they are on it prior to Oct 2004 when the law changed. My passport is valid until Apr 2013, another 4 years (approx). From Aug if I want to fly on a Ryanair flight with my kids (which I don’t, am determined to vote with my feet after our experience overall!) I will have to fork out for three new passports, one each for my kids and for myself!!!!! Just because Ryanair says I have to. I understand that this is international law when flying to the US, but it’s certainly not the case for flights within the EU. When I queried it with the staff member I was informed that it’s because Ryanair will be fully implementing the online check-in from Aug and there will be no airport check-in. What really is driving me around the bend is that I checked in online two weeks ago with same passport and it was accepted without any problem. So why should it be any different in Aug? It seems to me that the company is simply allowed to do whatever the hell it likes at this stage without any proper control or surveillance. Does anyone know any more about this??? Also the company is not advertising this fact loud and clear and I have no doubt that many families will be in meltdown at the airport when they’re told that they can’t go on their holidays just because Ryanair has changed an international law.
    Also re Ryanair’s controversial advertsing campaign… I implore people to simply ignore the latest one ie standing flight…it’s just another strategy to get people talking!!!

Leave a Reply