Irish budget airline Ryanair's CEO Michael O'Leary said he plans to offer $10 flights from New York to Europe as soon "as he could get enough planes" in an address at the Irish Hotels Federation conference yesterday.
The Independent reports that Ryanair would offer €10 flights to Boston and New York and US$10 (€7.30) seats back to Europe, adding that the airline "would fly from 12-14 major European cities to 12-14 major US destinations and a full service would begin within six months of Ryanair getting the aircraft to do so."
Apparently the budget airline already has a business plan in place for carrying out transatlantic flights, but would not be able to do so for another "four to five years" due to Arab states buying up the present supply of aircraft. At least that's their excuse for now.
O'Leary has been quoted saying; "We can make money on 99 cent fares in Europe – not every seat will be €10 of course, there will also need to be a very high number of business or premium seats."
Those of you who have flown on RyanAir know how much of a clusterfuck those "99 cent fares" really are, and you'll probably be as skeptical as I am of the airline successfully carrying out a transatlantic flight at any cost.
Last time I rode on RyanAir, my flight was canceled an hour before scheduled takeoff and they tried to leave me in some Parisian suburb for half a week waiting for the the "next available" trip to Stockholm.
But I'd love to fly across the pond for ten bucks as much as the next guy, so I'll try and ignore my cynicism as this story develops.
According to Irish Central, O'Learly also "urged Transport Minister Leo Varadkar to privatize Irish airports to make them more efficient as other European countries had done." As some of you have pointed out, odds are high that's O'Learly's real priority and the "$10 flight promise" is a publicity play to get some airtime on that issue.