Wednesday, October 17, 2007 victorious in spat with Ryanair - perhaps not is back in favour at the Advertising Standards Authority after last week's slap on the wrists.

The ASA has banned a press ad produced by Ryanair which stuck the knife into online travel agencies, claiming "if you buy a Ryanair ticket through an online agent you're being ripped off...".


Not content with this mild slating of "last" [note the space between 'last' and 'minute'], the ad continued:

"They overcharge by 100% or more. Don't provide correct terms or conditions. Don't notify schedule changes. Don't provide web check-in or priority boarding." - one can imagine - was pretty incensed about the whole thing and complained to the ASA about the headline and allegations of overcharging, schedule changes and incorrect terms and conditions.

The ASA upheld all the complaints from and has demanded the ad be withdrawn by Ryanair.

In fairness to Ryanair, it did actually have a reasonable go at defending its actions, claiming the ad had appeared in newspapers with a combined circulation of five million and the only complaint had come from

One of the frequent criticisms of the advertising watchdog system for press, outdoor and online ads in the UK is that - unlike campaigns for television or radio - it is retrospective.

In this case, some might argue that the damage to the reputation of online travel agencies has already been achieved in the ad and a ticking off by the ASA - which really only the marketing and travel industries will hear about - is a small price to pay [in fact, there is no price to pay in terms of a fine].

Kevin May, editor, Travolution

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Anonymous said...

Good point Kevin about the impact of an ASA ban.

Absolutely nothing really to redress the damage done by the original ad.

Some of the public will have noticed the original ad but how many will know the ASA has cone down hard on ryanair.

David said...

It's a little like apologies that newspapers print when they are taken to task over an incorrect story. Often the 'wronged' party actually further promotes the story by bringing additional attention to it.