PASSENGERS have been left outraged after Ryanair doubled the price of reserving a standard seat from £2 to £4.
The airline has also increased the price of their extra legroom seats from £11 to £15.
The price bump was revealed by Money Saving Expert this week.
It comes as British holidaymakers have accused the budget airline of purposefully splitting up groups and families so that they pay the extra fee to have seats together.
Dozens of passengers have complained about the policy, including one party of 20 golfers who were flying from the UK to Spain.
According to one of the group, three people in the group paid for legroom and the remaining 17 were all placed in middle seats.
Last year, a hen party was sat in fifteen different rows, despite checking in four days ahead of their flight.
The Civil Aviation Authority has now announced that it is launching an inquiry following so many complaints.
— niki spiller (@sleepinbooti) July 3, 2017
CAA Chief Executive Andrew Hinton warned the watchdog won’t hesitate to take actions against rip-off airlines, with the authority writing to 20 airlines to demand an explanation of how their computer systems allocate seats.
Hinton said: “Airline seating practices are clearly causing some confusion for consumers.
“Airlines are within their rights to charge for allocated seats, but if they do so it must be done in a fair and transparent way.
“Our research shows that some consumers are paying to sit together when, in fact, they might not need to.
@Ryanair can you explain to me why when checking in online for a flight (so we can sit together) you place us apart despite their being numerous available seats together? Is it so you can immediately ask us to pay to sit together? pic.twitter.com/5iSYy7iBO6
— Alex Robertson (@AlexRobertson15) March 14, 2018
“We will not hesitate to take any necessary enforcement action should it be required at the end of the review.”
A Ryanair spokesperson told Sun Online: “Like all businesses, our fees can change unlike our fares which keep coming down.
“There have been some recent changes as per our list of fees published on our website.
Ryanair has doubled the cost of reserving a standard seat ????
A standard seat reservation has increased from £2 to £4, plus a seat with extra legroom has gone from £11 to £15 ??
Will the price increase stop you reserving seats? ???? pic.twitter.com/gaoGzlMiC8
— Money Advisor (@moneyadvisorltd) March 15, 2018
“All these fees are optional to our customers and Ryanair continue to offer the lowest fares on flights with our average fare in the UK this year less than £35.”