Regional court says Ryanair practice 'deceptive', fined

Upholds penalty of 850,000 euros over optional insurance

(ANSA) - Rome, January 12 - The Lazio regional court on Monday denounced what it called a "deceptive practice" by budget airline Ryanair and upheld an antitrust fine of 850,000 euros.
    Ryanair was convicted almost one year ago by the Italian Antitrust Authority of failing to provide sufficient transparency on an optional cancellation insurance policy.
    Last February, the antitrust authority said the Irish airline violated Italy's consumer code by failing to give consumers enough information about the optional policy - an allegation denied by Ryanair.
    In Monday's decision, the regional court said the antitrust authority correctly concluded Ryanair's cancellation policy was "a deceptive practice" because it was difficult for customers to understand.
    The court said that, adding to confusion, the policy was placed on the airline's website near drop-down menus for mandatory information including country of residence.
    "The information provided...was absolutely incomplete and ambiguous, not allowing the consumer to make a conscious choice," said the regional court.
    Ryanair had challenged the initial court finding.


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