Aer Lingus-Ryan Air transfers?

Feb 25th, 2009, 11:23 AM
  #1  
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Aer Lingus-Ryan Air transfers?

My family is traveling from the DC area to Italy in late June-early July. In researching airfares, I've found that we can save over $1,000 (for four people) by flying IAD-DUB on Aer Lingus, and then flying on Ryan Air to Rome. The connection times are very long -- roughly 8 hours outbound and overnight in Dublin on the return -- but for $1,000, why not? My question is whether there are potential problems with doing this that I might be overlooking. For example, has anyone had a negative experience with Ryan Air?

I'd love to hear from anyone who has done this, pro or con.

Thanks in advance.
BLK2SA07 is offline  
Feb 25th, 2009, 12:08 PM
  #2  
 
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I personally have not flown Ryanair, but I have heard many negative comments. I have heard of a lot of cancellations with no real recourse, exhuberant fees, bad service.

If you do decide to use Ryanair, I highly recommend you strictly follow the luggage guidelines or you will get smacked (hard!) with a hefty fine.

It was hard for us to resist using Ryanair for our most recent trip since their fares are so cheap!
nrosebrock is offline  
Feb 25th, 2009, 12:11 PM
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Hi BLK,

I have never had a problem with Ryanair but a few things you might want to bear in mind
1. Ryanair charge for checked luggage and carry on is only 1 bag - if you have a hand bag (purse), laptop etc it is considered carry on.

As far as spending an overnight in Dublin it depends on your departure

If you have a full day then a day in Dublin, in a low cost Hotel/B&B would be great.

On the other hand if you leave early the following morning then it would be necessary to stay at one of the airport hotels (which are expensive)and may not be such a good option.

Helen
cambe is offline  
Feb 25th, 2009, 12:12 PM
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Just one more bit of information to throw into the mix... If you fly Aer Lingus from Dublin to Rome, you won't have to pay to check luggage. I've never looked into flights to Rome on either airline, so have no idea how much difference that would make. But it's something else to consider.

We're flying Aer Lingus to Dublin in June because our daughter and her Irish husband are having their formal church wedding (as opposed to the quicky "immigration" wedding they did here) nearby. DH, DS and I are doing a quick trip to Barcelona the week after the wedding. We wound up deciding to go with Aer Lingus because, as I said, it's a quick trip, and the airport Aer Lingus flies into is much more convenient to Barcelona than the one RyanAir uses. When I booked our tickets I learned that, because we were flying Aer Lingus from the US less than 14 days prior to the trip to Barcelona, it's considered part of the same itinerary and therefore eligible for free luggage checking.

The problem with the "budget" carriers like RyanAir is that they get you coming and going with added fees!
CAPH52 is offline  
Feb 25th, 2009, 12:27 PM
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Sorry I forgot to add

2. There is nothing to do in Dublin airport. You could go into Dublin but you would only have about 2 hours.

Hope this helps

Helen
cambe is offline  
Feb 25th, 2009, 12:47 PM
  #6  
 
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CAPH52, we are spending 1 wk in Ireland and a week in Spain via Aer Lingus. I'll have to look into the free luggage checking. Did you have to set that up before you purchased your ticket, or is it standard? Did you book directly with Aer Lingus, or through a broker (i.e. ebookers, etc)?

Thanks!!!
nrosebrock is offline  
Feb 25th, 2009, 12:51 PM
  #7  
 
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BLK2SA07, I forgot to mention in my previous post...

If you do decide to fly Ryanair and have an overnight in Dublin, check Bewley's Hotel. Their rooms have 1 double, 1 single and 1 sofabed for 89 Euro.
nrosebrock is offline  
Feb 25th, 2009, 12:56 PM
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Aer Lingus is also a low-cost carrier in Europe, with service standards that are going down towards the Ryanair (note the name is one word) level. But they are not yet as awful. They have frequent sales, most of them for off-season or midweek dates. It is worth checking their website regularly.
Padraig is offline  
Feb 25th, 2009, 01:26 PM
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nrosebrock, I actually only learned of the baggage thing because of problems I encountered on the website. Because of those stupid security blocks the credit cards do now, I wound up having to call Aer Lingus to see whether my purchase had gone through. That's when I was told that our flights could be "linked" to avoid baggage fees.

If you've already booked your tickets, you might want to give them a call. The US phone number is 1-800-474-7424

Padraig, you're not the first person I've heard say that service is declining on Aer Lingus. But I have to say that their telephone customer service is still much better than nearly any other company (of any kind) that I've had to deal with in the past couple of years.
CAPH52 is offline  
Feb 25th, 2009, 01:38 PM
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With RyanAir you'll fly into Ciampino, which is the smaller airport. Rome Shuttle Limousine will take you from the airport to anywhere in the city for about 50 euros for 4.

Count on RyanAir to be a stickler on baggage size and weight, although not always. If you play by the rules, it is fine. The space on the planes is small, but it isn't for that long of a flight and if you can save that much money, I say go for it. Don't waste your money on the inflight lottery tickets.

Also, the "early checkin" is kind of a rip off. While you may get to board earlier, it isn't always guaranteed, like when you leave Rome you take a bus out to the plane. If you talk to the ticket agent nicely they may just give an early boarding to you.

But be certain of your savings before you do the mixed booking.

dave
daveesl is offline  
Feb 25th, 2009, 02:55 PM
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CAPH52 wrote: "Padraig, you're not the first person I've heard say that service is declining on Aer Lingus."

Aer Lingus really runs two kinds of operation. For transatlantic business, the traditional service approach is maintained, so if you are dealing with them in the US you get full service. It's different for me here in Europe: I get the pared-down package.
Padraig is offline  
Feb 26th, 2009, 09:54 PM
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Why don't you book your Dublin-Rome flights with Aer Lingus then contact them to see if you can get the tickets linked to your Transatlantic tickets. Then you'll get your luggage checked through, Transatlantic luggage allowances, cover if you miss one of your flights...

If you really really want to fly Ryanair then I'd ensure that you have plans in place for if your flights are delayed as the only assistance Ryanair will give you is to sell you a full price ticket or put you on the "next available flight" - which could be several days in the future.

Then you have to take into account the Ryanair business model which basically is to screw the customer till the pips squeak. The headline price they give might be low but the final price you'll pay can be substantially higher - and they'll try to charge you for things you don't need, making it difficult to remove them. And don't forget their luggage allowances - ONE cabin bag (ie no purse, laptop bag, lunch...) and 15kg of checked luggage
alanRow is offline  
Feb 27th, 2009, 06:26 AM
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Our family is pretty much doing the same trip as yours in June(except we're flying out of SFO).

I booked our transatlantic flight with Aer Lingus and fully intended to fly within Europ on Ryanair, but after some checking of prices, airports both fly in/out of, and extra fees, we ultimately decided to book with Aer Lingus in/out of Dublin.

Like CAPH52 said, I had called Aer Lingus and found out the same thing about the luggage being free when I am flying transatlantic within 14 days. That swayed me a lot since there are four of us. I also felt that should something go wrong with our flights, that Aer Lingus may be more sympathetic to us if all of our flights are with them. I don't know if you only plan on flying in/out of Rome, but when we looked at both airlines airports, Aer Lingus was more conveinent to the cities.

We ended up flying into Dublin in the morning and leaving Dublin onto Venice in the afternoon. Then on the end, we are flying back to Dublin and spending a couple nights at Bewleys before heading back to the US. We are also staying at Bewleys and got a family room for 84.16 euros per night.

It's not to say I wouldn't fly Ryanair, I think in this case Aer Lingus was just the better choice. I have flown on EasyJet and as long as you know what to expect, then they are fine especially for the cost.
namaka is offline  
Feb 27th, 2009, 07:05 AM
  #14  
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Thanks. All replies were very helpful. I see now that going Aer Lingus the whole way is roughly the same price as Ryan Air -- the only drawback is it would involve two overnights in Dublin (one each way).
BLK2SA07 is offline  

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