Ryanair online check in: budget airline limits free check in to 4 days before departure

Updated on 18 October 2016 | 8 Comments

Passengers might have to check in while abroad to avoid paying a fee.

The free check in window for Ryanair passengers will fall from seven to four days before departure from next month.

This means travellers who are away for more than four days will have to check in while abroad to avoid paying an extra charge for their journey home.

The charge will be introduced on November 1 and applies to all Ryanair passengers who don't pay for a reserved seat, including those who've already booked a flight for after this date.

Passengers who pay to check in on the day will be charged £45 per person, per flight.  

However, those who pay for a seat can check in for free up to 30 days before flying. If you don’t reserve a seat, which costs between £4 and £15 per person, then your seat will be allocated at random.

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Why is it making the change?

Under current rules, you can check in between two hours and seven days before departure.

The airline said that it’s changing its check-in policy because it will increase the choice available to customers who pay extra for reserved seats by giving them a longer time frame to choose where to sit.

Ryanair’s Kenny Jacobs said: “We’re continuing to listen to our customers through our ‘Always Getting Better’ programme and this change reflects the customer feedback we have received.

"From November 1, we’re offering those customers who wish to reserve seats more time to choose their preferred seat, by reducing the check-in window from seven to four days pre-departure for those customers who prefer a random seat.

"Customers who do not wish to reserve their seat will be able to check-in between four days and two hours ahead of their departure, using both the Ryanair.com website and Ryanair mobile app, and will continue to be randomly allocated a seat, free of charge."

It's worth noting that airlines such as British Airways only let you check in online up to 24 hours in advance, so some will argue that the change isn't a big deal. What do you think? Let us know in the comments section below.

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