Italy's competition watchdog is investigating Ryanair's hand luggage charge
The watchdog, Antitrust, has opened an inquiry into Ryanair’s new policy, saying hand luggage is an "essential” item for travellers and should be included in the plane ticket price.
From November, Ryanair will only allow non-priority passengers to take a small personal bag onto the plane if it fits under the seat in front.
Customers will be charged up to £10 if they want to take a 10kg bag into the cabin. If they fail to pay ahead of time they will have to pay up to £25 at the airport.
Priority customers can still bring two free carry on bags, including a 10kg bag.
Antitrust said the new charges could amount to unfair commercial practice because it distorts the final price of the ticket and does not allow a true comparison with other airlines’ prices.
The Italian competition authority intervened after receiving complaints from consumer associations.
"If its unfair commercial practice on hand luggage is confirmed, Ryanair... should reimburse all its customers who suffer unfair additional costs," association Codacons said, vowing to take the issue to court if necessary. ■