Germany bans Ryanair from charging credit card fees

Ryanair has been handed a nasty blow to its business model in Germany when their federal court banned the budget airline from charging credit card fees on flight reservations.

The case was brought against Ryanair by the German consumer protection agency who complained about the fee. Every ticket booked for Ryanair flights comes with an additional fee, varying between $2 and $5, and there is no way to avoid paying it.

Because Ryanair does not offer an alternative payment method, the courts dismissed the Ryanair argument that the bank processing fees are simply being passed on to consumers. In their verdict, the courts said the airline must provide an “established” payment method that does not require any extra effort or cost.

This verdict is just another blow to Ryanair in Europe – recently the airline was hit with a three million Euro fine for not aiding stranded passengers. In the end, if Ryanair does start including credit card fees in their ticket prices, it’ll most likely mean ticket prices will simply go up.

Ironically, the court verdict came at the same time Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary was in Germany to announce a major investment in Frankfurt for a new maintenance facility.