Ryanair seating allocation continues to prompt reader rage

Reader disquiet about how Ryanair has been managing its seat allocation in recent months has not gone away.

In early June we highlighted the experiences of hundreds of the airline’s passengers who told us they had been deliberately separated from their travelling companions because they had refused to pay for reserved seating.

Ryanair flatly denied there had been any change in its policy and said that the reason people were being separated was simply because more people were flying with the airline so “there are now less seats to allocate randomly”.

At the end of June BBC’s Watchdog programme took a closer look at the story.

With the help researchers from the University of Oxford it carried out an experiment which saw four people booked onto four flights.

Each time they were split up and each time they were given separate middle seats throughout the plane.

And according to Watchdog each time the group could see “from the seating availability charts online that there was plenty of room on the plane for them to be allocated seats together”.

According to Dr Jennifer Rodgers of the university, the odds of this happening randomly were “astronomical” and she told the programme that “you have a greater chance of winning the lottery”.

Still Ryanair insists there is no deliberate policy…

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