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‘Unconstitutional’: Ryanair launches lawsuit against Irish quarantine policy

written by Sandy Milne | August 3, 2020

Ryanair has taken a swipe at the Irish government’s 14-day quarantine policy (Ryanair).

Europe’s biggest airline has mounted a challenge against Ireland’s 14-day quarantine policy, with outspoken Ryanair CEO Michael O’Leary dismissing the government’s position as “unconstitutional”.

The news comes shortly after Dublin reintroduced mandatory self-isolation measures for travellers arriving from a spate of European countries on 21 July, and discouraged citizens from non-essential travel outside the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland.

While the mainland UK, France, and Spain all made the “no-go” list, popular travel destinations including Italy, Greece and Hungary were excluded from the provisions.

In its bid to have the restrictions overturned, Ryanair alleges that the requirements are unlawful, infringe disproportionately on individual rights and are detrimental to its business.

Adding that the measures are mandatory in nature and have the same effect as regulations, the company says the recommendations should have been approved by the houses of the Oireachtas (Irish Parliament).

Accordingly, it alleges that the policy is incompatible with the provisions of the 1970 and 2020 Health Acts, the European Convention of Human Rights and the European Charter of Fundamental Rights. The lawsuit, which has been joined by Aer Lingus’ parent company IAG, will return before the court in mid-August.

Together with IAG and EasyJet, the airline launched a similar legal action last month in Britain. The case was subsequently dropped after the British government moved to scrap its 14-day quarantine rule.



  • Ian D


    Of course the quarantine policy is detrimental to Ryanair’s business, but are they blind to what’s happening in the world? There are quarantine provisions in many countries which have had a very positive effect in some places, e.g. New Zealand where there have been no cases of community transmission for more than 90 days. Many airlines have had to virtually shut down in order to protect the well-being of their nations. Ryanair is motivated by pure self-interest and their shameful attitude needs to be challenged. Ian D

  • Peter Ritty


    Cannot see how Ryanair are the largest airline in Europe. Your quote.
    Hate budget carriers who always threaten action. In Australia we know what it costs to operate and pay accordingly.
    We have the best airines in the world.

  • Seems everyone is jumping on the ”Constitutional rights” bandwagon, despite the entire world facing the biggest threat to our survival with this pandemic. Of course O’Leary is no stranger to controversy, so no surprise at all he would take this stand. Maybe he thinks like Trump, that Coronavirus is just a ”bad flu” and we will all get over it, except the 690,000 that have perished so far. Maybe he should visit a COVID 19 clinic for a reality check.

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