Low-cost carriers Ryanair and Wizz Air have been fined for having hand baggage policies that are “not transparent” by an Italian regulator.
The Italian Competition Authority (AGCM) has fined Ryanair €3 million and Wizz Air £1 million after an investigation into how they charge customers for taking bags into aircraft cabins.
The fines are related to new baggage policies, introduced by both airlines in November 2018, and mean that passengers are only allowed to take one small personal bag, such as a handbag, onboard as part of the standard ticket price.
To take larger bags into the cabin, passengers have to buy a “priority” product from the airlines.
“Hand baggage is an essential element of the air transport service and its transport must be permitted without incurring any additional costs,” said AGCM in a statement.
“With the request for a variable surcharge of between €5 and €25 for large hand baggage, the two companies proceeded to increase the price of the ticket in a non-transparent manner.”
Ryanair said it would appeal the decision and added its baggage policy was “transparent and beneficial to consumers”.
While Wizz Air said its policy “fully complies with the law” and the airline would be requesting a judicial review of AGCM’s decision.