Ryanair employment practices are getting it in hot water with various countries in Europe. Now, German prosecutors have raided Ryanair’s staff rooms at six airports.
Ryanair “hires” pilots via outside agencies and requires pilots to form their own companies that then charge for services provided.
You can access The Local.de’s article here of which below is an excerpt:
The investigations are targeting two staffing companies that handle the contracting of Ryanair pilots. In order to keep business costs down, Ryainair and other discount fliers hire companies that manage pilots under contract. These freelance pilots are then employed by the company without the company having to pay any of their social taxes, including healthcare, pension payments, and employment insurance.
Zeit Online reported that investigators were asking the pilots how often they work for RyanAir, if they are able to work for other airlines, whether they have employment contracts with any of the businesses involved and who handles their business dealings.
Under the freelance pilot business model, pilots are expected to each be their own business, however under German law, freelancers who work exclusively for one company are technically employed by said company.
Ryanair was probably the first ultra-LCC in Europe that is based in Ireland. The airline has bases all over the Europe and takes advantage of the single market.
The airline has recently tried to tone down its previously rather controversial CEO that used to make headlines with ideas such as charging for toilet access.
There is nothing wrong trying to save money but these captains really aren’t independent contractors and it is good that governments in Europe are trying to correct the situation.
Ryanair is one of those airlines that often fly to secondary or tertiary airports that are nowhere near the city they advertise to take you. Just to keep in mind if you are contemplating flying on them + all the ancillary fees……