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The no-frills Irish airline Ryanair is known for having affordable ticket prices and flying to many destinations, primarily throughout Europe. If you plan to travel to destinations outside the United States, you could save money by flying with Ryanair.
But is Ryanair safe? In summary, yes — the airline has received good safety ratings, and its safety records show that it has had minimal incidents — none of which were deadly.
In this article, we'll examine the safety of Ryanair, plus its reliability stats, so you know what to expect before booking.
Ryanair at a glance
If you've never flown with Ryanair, you'll want to ensure you have clear expectations before boarding. First and foremost, Ryanair is a low-cost carrier. While the airline has low-cost ticket prices, extra add-ons such as seat selection and checked baggage fees can make your flight more expensive. But if you're a no-frills traveler who packs light, you can save money by flying with budget airlines such as Ryanair.
Ryanair's route network serves countries across Europe, North Africa and the Middle East.
» Learn more: Are any low-cost European airlines worth flying?
Ryanair has never had a fatal crash
Before boarding a plane with an unfamiliar airline, reviewing the brand's safety records is a good idea.
Ryanair has an excellent safety record. In its 37 years of existence, there have been zero passenger or crew member fatalities.
According to the Aviation Safety Network, the airline has thirteen reported incidents, the last occurring in 2019. Several of these incidents were minor taxiway collisions with other planes on the runway.
» Learn more: Should you fly international budget airlines?
Ryanair has been recognized for its safety
AirlineRatings.com regularly reviews the safety of the world's airline companies so air travelers can feel more confident choosing airlines. Ryanair has a safety rating of 7 out of 7 from AirlineRatings.com.
Ryanair was named one of AirlineRatings.com's Top Ten Safest Low-Cost Airlines for 2022.
The following factors were considered when choosing which airlines made this list:
Incident records over the past two years.
Crash records over the past five years.
Results of International Civil Aviation Organisation audits. The ICAO audits the aviation safety and security oversight of its 193 Member States.
European Union Banned list status — Is the airline blocklisted from operating under certain circumstances or banned altogether from operating in Europe?
Other low-cost airlines that made the list include:
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Is Ryanair reliable?
Now that you know more about Ryanair's safety rating, you may wonder if the airline is reliable. You want to feel confident that you'll be able to get where you need to go once you book a flight.
The good news is Ryanair is a relatively reliable airline. We reached this conclusion by examining on-time arrival and flight cancellation data from The Official Aviation Guide.
The Official Aviation Guide collects data related to airline and airport reliability. We used some of this data to compare Ryanair's reliability to other low-cost European airlines.
Below are on-time arrival and cancellation stats for September 2022:
On-time arrivals %
Norwegian Air Shuttle (Norway)
Wizz Air (Hungary)
Wizz Air UK (U.K.)
The above data shows Ryanair doesn't have the highest on-time arrival rate. But it's not poor either. On the contrary, Ryanair's on-time arrival rate is better than EasyJet, Wizz Air, and Wizz Air UK.
As for flight cancellation rates, Ryanair has a lower rate than:
Norwegian Air Shuttle.
Wizz Air UK.
Of course, there aren't any guarantees that your arrival won't be delayed or your flight won't be canceled. After all, travel doesn't always go as planned. But with these figures in mind, you can feel confident when booking with Ryanair.
To better protect your travel investment, you may consider purchasing travel insurance if your trip doesn't go as planned.
» Learn more: Is travel insurance worth it?
Should you fly with Ryanair?
So, is it a good idea to fly with Ryanair?
When considering safety on Ryanair flights, you can feel confident flying because the low-cost brand has a good airline safety record and zero incidents resulting in fatalities.
While Ryanair doesn't have the highest reliability ratings compared to other European budget airlines, recent on-time arrival and flight cancellation data shows that Ryanair is still reliable. Its on-time arrivals figures are not bad and its flight cancellation rate is low.
As long as you go into your flight experience aware that you're flying with a low-cost carrier, you can feel confident booking with Ryanair.
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