Ryanair to offer $15 flights over the Atlantic

Everyone’s favorite low-cost carrier, Ryanair, just put a price on the transatlantic tickets that they’ll soon be offering: a whopping 8£.

“Eight quid,” you say, “how can they afford that?!?!” Well, the same way that they offer 1£ flights throughout Europe — by making you pay departure and airport taxes and by making you pay dearly for additional fees like bags, meals and drinks.

Don’t expect to get 8£ flights on weekends in the summer either, you can wager that high-season fares are going to be significantly more than the “off-season” prices. So in total you’ll be paying around $300 in fees plus the $15 ticket and whatever other fees you accrue on the trip. Still it’s not a bad deal, I guess.

As to whether the transatlantic product will ever even get off the ground (get it?) I’m still dubious. CEO Michael O’Leary’s proposition to charge extra for a first class cabin to recoup for losses from coach is purely hinged on his ability to sell seats up front. And from what I hear, most business travelers won’t touch Ryanair with a ten foot pole.

O’Leary plans to make his plans for the airline more clear in a press conference at some point today. In the best of cases, however, you won’t be flying on a RyanAtlantic flight until late 2009 or early 2010. Time to start saving!