This morning we published an article on the 800 passengers and crew members that got stranded at Malaga Airport after hurricane Leslie hit parts of Portugal. There is more on the story of the stranded Ryanair crews. As previously written, Ryanair ops couldn’t immediately provide accommodation for the stranded crews as – according to Ryanair COO Peter Bellew – all hotels in Malaga were completely booked.
The crew – already at odds with their management – was forced to sleep on the crew room floor and decided to take a picture (see below). After seeing the picture on social media, Peter Bellew tweeted that the crew didn’t spend the entire night on that floor but was offered an access to the VIP lounge of Malaga airport: “The storm created huge damage in Portugal. Later after this the crew moved to VIP lounge. Apologies to the crew we could not find accommodation”.
But that information seems to be untrue as Alex Macheras discovered: “I’ve spoken to the ‘SALA VIP’ lounge at Malaga Airport, the only lounge in the terminal, who confirmed no crew from any airline entered the lounge, and not only described it as “against lounge policy” but added “it’s also impossible, as our lounge closes at 23:00 each night, and this was the case on the night of flight disruption caused by the storms”.
“There are at least 400 hotels in and around the main city of Malaga, City, with a further 1,500 properties within 20 kilometres of the airport. Furthermore, it’s low-season in Southern Spain, and most hotel occupancy rates are at 50% (half-empty) as is normal for this time of year. Hence the statement of Peter Bellew is simply not the truth, nor the reality in Malaga“, Alex Macheras commented.
“Ryanair left an evening flight’s cabin crew to sleep on the floor of the airline’s crew report room, prior to working their next flight.”
Unfortunately. All hotels were completely booked out in Malaga. The storm created huge damage in Portugal. Later after this the crew moved to VIP lounge. Apologies to the crew we could not find accommodation.
— Peter Bellew (@peterbellew) October 14, 2018