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Italy Antitrust investigating Ryanair for carry-on baggage charge

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Italy’s competition watchdog is investigating Ryanair for potentially distorting the airline market by charging for carry-on baggage.

Antitrust, Italy’s competition authority, said carry-on baggage was an “essential element of transport” that should be factored into the ticket price, Agence France-Presse reported.

Ryanair announced earlier this year that from November, customers with non-priority seats — the cheapest fare — will only be able to take a “small personal bag” that fits under their seats, like a handbag or laptop case.

Customers will have to pay €8 ($9.4) to carry an extra bag of up to 10 kg (22 lb), the new rules say.

Antitrust said that the policy was an unfair commercial practice as it distorts the final price of the ticket, which means customers cannot properly compare Ryanair’s prices with those of other airlines.

Shawn Pogatchnik/AP

Consumer associations had complained to Antitrust about Ryanair’s baggage charge decision, Agence France-Presse reported.




Codacons, an Italian consumer rights association, said in a statement that “if its unfair commercial practice on hand luggage is confirmed, Ryanair … should reimburse all its customers who suffer unfair additional costs.”

Codacons also pledged to take the matter to court if necessary.

Ryanair justified its decision to charge for carry-on baggage last year, saying that passengers were bringing on board too much luggage to make it sustainable.

The new policy, Ryanair said, is intended to reduce the number of customers flying with two carry-on bags, a development that was “causing flight delays due to large numbers of gate bag and cabin bag offloads.”

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