Ryanair signs up 2m loyalty scheme members

Ryanair has signed up more than 2 million customers to its myRyanair loyalty scheme in 5 months as part of wider plans to improve customer experience and appeal to more travellers. 

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MyRyanair saves customers’ data, making it quicker and simpler to book flights in future, as well as allowing Ryanair to offer tailored news and personalised fares. It will also offer access to the airline’s new business and family services once they launch later in the year.

Customers are prompted to sign up and create a profile when they make a booking, although they can also do it from the home page. More than 700,000 people signed up in the first 2 months following its launch in December, with a further 1.3 million signing up in the next 3 months.

Speaking on a results call this morning (19 May), Ryanair chief executive Michael O’Leary admitted that Ryanair used to have a website that was “worst in class” and that made it as difficult as possible to book tickets. He credits improvements to the site and the recent TV and marketing campaign to support those changes as part of the reason for a big step up in forward bookings for the summer months.

They are currently 5 percentage points ahead of last year, which O’Leary says is a big increase given that the World Cup would usually lead to lower forward bookings as people put off taking holidays until their team goes out of the competition.

O’Leary said: “We have transformed our digital business in the last 6 months. We had a website that was worst in class that is becoming best in class. Our fare finder service is unique and is a concept competitor easyJet has announced plans to copy. Plus myRyanair is building up very quickly – more than 2 million passengers have signed up and we are planning to roll out a new mobile app and tailor the website for phones, smartphones and tablets.”

Ryanair is planning further marketing campaigns to support upcoming product launches, including “heavyweight advertising” in the business press to back up the launch of its business service, which is expected towards the end of August. It will be offered at a premium compared to Ryanair’s normal fares but consists of value-added extras such as flexible tickets, free reserved seating, priority boarding and check-in bags and security fast-track.

However, Ryanair has ruled out another step change in its marketing budget, which tripled this year as the airline looks to communicate its customer service changes.

O’Leary said: “I’m sure Kenny (Jacobs, Ryanair’s chief marketing officer) would like €100m but that isn’t going to happen. This was a one-time step up in marketing costs.”

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