Ryanair’s marketing chief has revealed the 15 new aircraft joining its fleet next year are unlikely to be deployed in the UK following Brexit.
Chief marketing officer Kenny Jacobs had been due to talk about the ‘rebooting of Ryanair’ at WIT’s (Web in Travel) first European conference in London on Thursday, but sent his apologies following last week’s referendum result.
In a statement read to delegates Jacobs said following Brexit the airline will instead “focus on markets that are part of the single market, like Italy, Spain and Germany”.
“We are disappointed with the referendum result,” he said.
“For the next few months it’s business as usual as Europe and Britain will go on their holidays.
“After the summer we could be facing a long period of uncertainty as UK politics is in turmoil and the new UK government will have to negotiate the exit with the EU.
“The single biggest issue for the entire travel business will be maintaining the single market.
“If the UK stays in the single market then things should continue as normal and the UK will stay part of open skies.
“If the UK leaves the single market then we have a lot of complications.
“We are hopeful and we expect both sides will find a way to maintain the free movement of people.
“But while there is uncertainty in currency fluctuations, businesses including ourselves will be slow to make additional investments in the UK.
“We have 15 new aircraft joining our fleet next year and we now don’t expect to deploy any of this in the UK market at this stage.
“Instead we will focus on markets that are part of the single market, like Italy, Spain and Germany.
“This is not the end of the world but it is a period of uncertainty – the UK will be in a recession and the UK consumer will travel less and spend less, that is a certainty.
“On the flip side, a weaker pound will mean Europeans travel to the UK more as the euro goes further, and they may want to say goodbye to a wonderful country and fantastic people, before Boris and Nigel pull up the drawbridge.”