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Ryanair attempts to win back customers with £5 flights to France and Germany

Ryanair’s CEO Michael O’Leary has been battling to keep passengers and pilots happy during the cancellation crisis (AFP Photo/FILIPPO MONTEFORTE)

No-frills airline Ryanair has launched a one million seat fire-sale offering flights to Europe for as little as £5.

After one of the worst weeks in its history, the Dublin-based carrier is attempting to win back customers with hundreds of rock-bottom prices this winter.

A one-way flight from London Stansted to Grenoble, southern France, next week is available for £4.99.
Ryanair is also selling £5 flights from Stansted to Lorient in north-west France.

MORE: Ryanair publishes full list of more than 2,000 cancelled flights

Flights from £7.99 are available between the UK and destinations including Aalborg in Denmark, Strasbourg in France, and Gdansk in Poland. The £9.99 flight sale includes journeys to Barcelona, Berlin, and Bologna.

The low-cost airline has endured a turbulent past few days after a “mess up” with pilot holiday rosters led to the the cancellation of more than 2,000 services up until the end of October.

At least 315,000 passengers were affected by the issue and the airline faces a compensation and refund bill running to more than €20 million.

MORE: Ryanair CEO admits mistakes amid cancellations crisis

Its reputation has taken a battering as many passengers were given just a few hours’ notice of cancelled flights in the first wave, leaving holiday plans in ruins, travellers stuck at home or abroad and facing a nightmare of trying to claw back money already paid out for hotels and car hire.

Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary has also been butting heads with his pilots who have threatened to “work to rule” over pay and conditions.

They have rejected a €12,000 bonus to forego holidays to see the airline through this bad patch – prompting O’Leary to threaten to force them to work or walk.

Ryanair is believed to have lost about 700 pilots to rival Norwegian, which has established a hub at Dublin, and offers better pay and a full-time contract.

MORE: Passengers ‘livid’ over cancelled Ryanair flights

This new winter flight sale offer is an effort to get passengers back onside through their wallets.

For every passenger taking up the offer, Ryanair will have to pay £13 in Air Passenger Duty — though it will hope to make up the difference via add-ons such as paying to reserve specific seats.

Peak school half-term holiday flights, however, are far more expensive. Flying from Stansted to Barcelona Girona on October 21, back a week later, for example, currently costs £207 return.