Taxpayers are picking up the cost of airline collapses because airlines like Ryanair are forcing rivals out of business, a former pilot has suggested.
Terry Tozer spoke to talkRADIO after budget airline Monarch collapsed, meaning the government has had to lay on flights for thousands of customers stuck overseas. The Civil Aviation Authority estimates that this has cost the taxpayer £60 million.
Tozer told Julia Hartley-Brewer: "I think people in the industry feel that the industry has been fundamentally changed and generally not for the better by the pressure and the cost of the low-cost airlines."
He claims Ryanair "cut costs everywhere and that includes the environment in which the staff have to work.
"So how low can you go? That is the question and we might be seeing some of the answers coming out now."
"You could argue if you were really cynical that people like [Ryanair CEO] Mr O'Leary are actually riding on the back of taxpayers' money because they’re cutting the fares to the bone. Cutting their staff situation to the bone. Forcing other people out of business and [taxpayers are] picking up the tab."
However Tozer said he thinks what has happened to Monarch, "from what I can tell, [is] maybe a failure to kind of re-adapt their business model" after losing flights to north Africa and Turkey due to terrorism.
Listen to the full interview above