A couple was left fuming after reportedly being hit with nearly £100 in charges for bringing pastries onto a Ryanair flight. Two passengers claimed the airline tried to make them pay £78 to bring traditional Mallorcan snacks named ensaïmada on a flight from Palma de Mallorca airport after the items are said to have exceeded cabin baggage limits. The allegations have sparked a local firestorm, with Mallorcan politicians wading in on the debate as they fear the decision could impact local food sales.
Speaking to The Guardian, local officials have warned that the rule could harm regional sales of the sweet treat.
The iconic pastry is made from heavy-duty flour, sugar, eggs, water and port lard.
The finished dough is baked in the oven for 12 hours at a minimum and dusted with sugar.
The expertise required to make them is passed down in traditional bakeries for generations, making them a precious product, and authorities have called out Ryanair representatives.
Iago Negueruela, tourism minister for the Balearics, told the Mirror that he called the airline to a meeting to “defend local produce and avoid any kind of discrimination”.
Pep Magraner, the president of the Balearic Islands pastry-makers association, claimed only Ryanair had imposed the rule on passengers.
He said that “all the other airlines” flying from Palma de Mallorca allow people to take ensaïmada aboard.
He added: “It’s only a problem with Ryanair, but we’re talking about a lot of flights, especially to the Spanish mainland, which is the destination of most of the ensaïmadas.”
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Ryanair typically allows people to bring food onboard flights but in hand luggage.
The airline is slightly stricter than others, however, with some – such as easyJet – allowing people to bring hot drinks, provided they are packed away.
Ryanair guidance states that it cannot allow “allow passengers to board the plane with hot drinks or consume their own alcohol” in the name of safety.
The latest dispute is part of a wider issue within the Balearic Islands, which has previously encountered similar problems with other airlines.
In 2022, the Balearic Islands’ government filed several cases against easyJet Eurowings and Volotea.
The cases, brought forward by the consumer affairs office, demanded fines up to €20,000 (£17,160) for hand luggage charging fees.
FACUA, an independent nonprofit consumer group, also levelled charges against Vueling and Ryanair.
Spain’s Ministry of Consumer Affairs is considering the cases as Spanish airports firm Aena is under mounting pressure to create a formula.
Express.co.uk has contacted Ryanair for comment.
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