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easyJet
Easyjet orange.png
IATA ICAO Callsign
U2[1] EZY EASY
FoundedMarch 1995; 24 years ago (March 1995)
AOC #2091
Operating bases
Fleet size321
Destinations136
Company slogan"generation easyJet"
Traded asLSEEZJ
HeadquartersLuton, England, UK
Key people
RevenueIncrease £5,898 million (2018)[3]
Operating incomeIncrease £592 million (2018)[3]
Net incomeIncrease £358 million (2018)[3]
EmployeesIncrease 12,280 (2017)[4]
Websitewww.easyjet.com

EasyJet Airline Company Limited, styled as easyJet, is a British low-cost airline headquartered at London Luton Airport.[5] It operates domestic and international scheduled services on over 1,000 routes in more than 30 countries.[6][7] easyJet plc is listed on the London Stock Exchange and is a constituent of the FTSE 100 Index.[8] easyGroup Holdings Ltd (the investment vehicle of the airline's founder Stelios Haji-Ioannou and his family) is the largest shareholder with a 34.62% stake (as of July 2014).[9] It employs nearly 11,000 people, based throughout Europe but mainly in the UK.[10]

EasyJet has seen expansion since its establishment in 1995, having grown through a combination of acquisitions[11][12] and base openings fuelled by consumer demand for low-cost air travel. The airline, along with associate companies easyJet Europe and easyJet Switzerland, operate more than 300 aircraft. It has 29 bases across Europe, the largest being Gatwick.[13] In 2014 the airline carried more than 65 million passengers,[14] making it the second-largest budget airline in Europe by number of passengers carried, behind Ryanair.[15]

EasyJet was featured in the television series Airline broadcast on ITV which followed the airline's operations at London Luton and later at other bases. Its pilot training scheme was the subject of another ITV television series, easyJet: Inside the Cockpit, which premiered in August 2017.[16]

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  • ✪ Full Episode | Flights And Fights - Inside The Low Cost Airline | BBC Documentary

Transcription

now ladies and gentlemen I would like to ask for everybody's attention please low-cost airlines have revolutionized the way we fly easyJet now carries more passengers than British Airways and the giant of the low-cost carriers is Ryanair see the wizard commercial visitor bombs Michael O'Leary is its boss the pheasant he may not look like a tycoon but he's built a multi-billion pound business that's all-time in Amsterdam Georgia budget airlines are private by making their planes and their staff work harder for passengers to air travel sometimes feels like hard work I think people don't like being treated like cattle even the cattle in their lorries get free water and and they don't have to cope with these things well good evening music this is Talia speaking how can I help the Battle of the low-cost airlines has been a clash of big personalities this inside story our Greek and an Irishman for to turn the airline industry on its head now have a chance to experience more of the world than they used but air travel has the middle of its glamour we do thank you very much indeed to your attention ladies and gentlemen and we hope you have a pleasant flight this afternoon easyJet has 200 planes each makes up to four round trips every day their crews meet up around 6:00 a.m. morning how are we all alright Fitzroy yes outstanding um three colleagues for the day and puts them through their daily tasks of safety Kevin you noticed a milky white buildup on the wind what might we think that this buildup is I would think that it's a rime ice absolutely it's bought at the table next to them their pilot and co-pilot check their flight plans and the weather is fine announced fam windy into Gatwick and wind into Edinburgh Gatwick is just one of 22 airports where easyJet faces its planes right so Gavin online yet morning so the issues this morning clearly well the first flights get underway at company headquarters at the Luton Airport senior management meet to review yesterday's operations ok so we have a challenging weekend so Saturday we've had eleven hundred and twenty sectors flown we also have some snow closures in the evening so the daily ops meeting is the one place where the right people get together who can take decisions about the day-to-day operation of the airline we've got about five or six engineering issues during the course of the day everyone knows what they're doing why they're doing in how they're doing in so it's an operation I think that is wrong in a militaristic fashion stelios a Jaguar noon started easyJet with five million pounds from his dad a Greek Cypriot shipping tycoon stelios no longer runs easyJet but he still its biggest shareholder now all told has been a great investment for me I made about a billion pounds in the process so it's a significant investment I keep an eye on today Stelios also keeps an eye on other businesses he owns and charities he bonds between them stelios a Greek Cypriot and Michael O'Leary from rural Ireland have transformed the way the British fly it probably does take you maybe their Greek mentality and an Irish mentality to kind of come at it from a slightly different angle I think you know I think it was logical that somebody growing a low fare airline business would emerge out of Ireland I think it's to be fair to Stelios it's much more impressive that the son of a Greek shipping billionaire who could if he wanted to been spawning around the world in executive jets has made another fortune by offering reasonably priced air travel it's just not as reasonably priced as Ryan here the low-cost rivals are fighting for traffic all over Europe Katowice in Poland is getting a lightning visit from O'Leary he's taking in three Polish airports today getting Ryanair's name in the media I think what I like most today about Poland is your rubbish football team that are even more rubbish than the Irish football team and that's setting the bar pretty low in terms of rubbish O'Leary has business in his blood he's the son of an Irish entrepreneur who'd had both successes and failures were you ambitious to make money yes I think one of the great things you learn if your father has made money and lost money a couple of times the great lesson you learn is the not having money and you don't remember the good times you'll remember the times when there wasn't money there and you generally it breeds the determination not to repeat that in your old life Ryanair was founded by tony ryan in the 1980s ryan was a successful businessman who hired O'Leary this is personal assistant in the early days the airline was small and very traditional it was good old-fashioned customer service if there was flight delays we give them food and drink and all the rest work and you get passengers coming up to you who are not delayed had no delay at all and they're queuing up for their food and everything like that just thanking us it's Ryanair it's feeding time at the zoo Ryanair was losing money but tony ryan hoped that deregulation which had helped American aviation would soon come to Europe he sent O'Leary to meet one of the industry's pioneers he said we're gonna have one last goal where I go to the states meet Southwest Airlines he arranged to meet he would Herb Kelleher and it was the kind of road to Damascus Morman herb Keller has Southwest did everything Airlines thought they shouldn't do that they wanted to make money ambassadors take any seat on the plane just like on a bus or a train it didn't serve full meals just drinks and snacks it made its planes and its crews work more flights per day it just seemed to be blatantly obvious that this was the way forward and that's what started the revolution in low fare air travel in Europe please go immediately to gate 112 gate 1 1 2 back at Gatwick at 7 a.m. easyJet's first wave of flights since elites and gentlemen a very good morning to you all and a warm welcome on board this easyJet flight to Amsterdam do you have a special voice yes I do my friends and family always ask me to do my work voice and show them what I say on board and they'll find it highly amusing the easyJet story began almost 20 years ago travellers between Scotland and London will now be able to make the trip for as little as 29 pounds on a new airline called appropriately enough easyJet but the airline's young founder business wasn't privileged upbringing I was suffering from the rich Sun syndrome so whatever I was doing people said it really is really a father's doing I'm eternally grateful that at the age of 28 he actually gave me the opportunity to do this amazing thing yes son go and prove yourself and of course it wasn't a guaranteed success maybe wouldn't have worked it would have been very embarrassing to go back and say in a dad of lost it all psycho leering Stelios made the pilgrimage to Texas to find out how to run I had a big advantage because I've never worked in an airline before so I literally travelled a bit on Southwest read a couple of books and the Harvard Business School case study on it and then said okay you know let's let's see how we're gonna make this work Richard Gooding was the manager of a small unprofitable Airport north of London at Luton when he got a visit from a keen young man who said he wanted to start an airline we had seen many people who wanted to start Airlines and they had a sort of common ingredient that they'd been to the bank who'd laughed a lot and then come to us to say but would we lend them the money to get started and he was less interested in planes than in selling tickets he had a theory of something called the ignition price and his his view of the ignition prices if you can get your price down to the what that is the market will explode this was very interesting innovative thinking for us in aviation I know it had happened in other retail industries but in aviation we hadn't thought like that stelios hired a couple of flames and Lewton what would make easyJet different was its branding stelios felt he wanted to own a color he wanted a color that nobody else was using and orange was his idea and we sat behind a computer screen until we arrived at the most shocking vivid shade of of orange we could find which was Pantone zero to one see I think which is using jet orange orange was telling us his idea for selling tickets easyJet's call center will take bookings direct from its customers no longer would travel agents get a hefty slice of every airfare it was suddenly possible to cut out the Commission of the travel agent cut out all the accounting of tickets and and save you know the best part of 20 percent I didn't know what I was doing remember it could have been possible that I could open the airline say we only take bookings over the telephone and the planes could have been empty but I was the right place at the right time good evening is it judge this is tell your speaking how can I help you the low fares Revolution had begun twenty years ago it would have been unheard of for a group of lads to pop off to Eastern Europe for a stag party today it's nothing special going to Riga in Latvia it's makes like do and cheaper than Prague is so traps down so there should be should be a good craic don't forget lower fares have changed attitudes to travel passengers there are in many cases indifferent to where they go so long as it's sunshine destination or a historic destination depending on what their personal preferences so if it's Krakow or Prague it really doesn't matter or if it's Alicante or Malaga it doesn't matter it's the place that determines that to man when you can travel to somewhere like you know flowers we're on a plane different country different culture for the same price it's at you to get up to somewhere like Manchester or Liverpool then yeah it's a bit of a no-brainer really the arrival of low-cost airlines has created work in Riga not least the police soon as we had Ryanair for example we had more and more Brits coming here it's very easy to find here some cheap entertainment that they concern to go some striptease maybe even prostitution and that it was easy available that brought here a lot of youngsters Riga responded to the influx by setting up a special police department just to deal with the new tourists they were all taught English which they would meet on their nightly patrols the tourist police have learnt how Brits like to enjoy themselves and the night there are many Brits having these tech parties there was one British guy dressed as a spider-man it was like fat spider-man it's how they enjoy their time here Richard and his friends are already impressed with Regas nightlife not going on lots of different ways you can see it's really texture specifially favorite box has been really good many locals see the new tourists as a gift from low-cost airlines local sales have been doing really good thing because they are bringing money here a bunch of the tourists come just for the weekends here and they are leaving spending a enormous money only when dawn breaks will the casualties be revealed yes it usually happens some British guys wake up somewhere they don't remember where they've been where are their friends where are they staying so it takes takes and hours to find the place where his thing low-cost airlines are certainly a boost to Regas economy but perhaps not the kind that locals would have chosen all these stag parties going to Eastern European cities do you feel you owe any apologies there I think you're look wait we're in low fares airline we carry 80 million passengers a year the overwhelming majority of the passengers we carry each year are families going on holidays businesspeople I think yet the apocryphal stag or hen party is a tiny proportion of the business and I think you'll find that in most Eastern European cities are in Dublin or in the cities where we bring that stag party or hen party business they're very grateful for the business the stag parties have to go somewhere inspirational visit to Southwest Airlines just over a year later Tony Ryan offered him the top job as chief executive of Ryanair I really didn't want to do it I didn't want the the profile of it and eventually you know I was persuaded to do it O'Leary got to work turning Ryanair into a low-cost airline it was a very simple choice close the airline or cut the costs it was brutal in terms of changing model but it changed dramatically and quickly and Michael was the driver behind that to be low-cost you really have to eat sleep drink and believe in low cost no more stuff for free and when you took away the free stuff guess what lots of people started buying a couple of litres and 200 bags even better than cutting costs was turning a cost into a profit it worked beautifully with the orange juice Finch's orange juice were trying to break into the UK market so it was very valuable for them even as a marketing tool for people going from Ireland to the UK to be drinking Finch's orange juice so at the start we were buying that product from them but we had to have a conversation with them then we'll say we can't afford to do this and they said ok well we still want to be on board so we give it to you for free and then we discovered that this probably was a marketing opportunity for them so they should pay for the privilege and if they didn't want to do it we get somebody else so they said ok with papers and then we said you can why don't you give us the glasses as well Ryanair was soon offering more flights and lower prices of Ireland the fare Lingus and British Airways high prices have kept families apart so now even God was back Ryanair Ryanair was really surprised that they found a powerful marketing agent in the Catholic Church because the priest started preaching from the pulpit reminding their congregations that you know that now they suddenly was cheap flights to Ireland so if they did want to go home and visit their families they could afford to do it and that they should check out Ryanair today easyJet and Ryanair still follow most of the original Southwest formula for how to run a low-cost airline thanks very much thank you thank you Thank You Carly by day thank you very much very welcome thank you about the fight they both rely on quick return its history in a 25-minute stop there's no time for cleaning staff to come on board so that's up to the crew it's amazing what gets left behind even easyJet's copilot helps out more engine this team has landed in Amsterdam but it doesn't make much things to them that's all time in Amsterdam ten minutes and the passengers if you turn around already it's my time to go whatever passengers might achievement no prospects and mostly blind younger players than the rest of the industry each airline flies only one time easyJet only flies Airbus planes and Ryanair only flies Boeing's it's another part of the original low-cost model the older our pilots can fly all the planes we are any one Bangka spares for all those planes the cabin crew when they get onboard know that all the galleys and everything will be in exactly the same spot so it's simply replicating our simple formula and making it simpler and simpler the more simple we can make it the more lower-cost and efficient it will be there's a final key part of the Southwest formula that easyJet never adopted but Ryanair has embraced it's the use of smaller out-of-the-way apples you're going to Frankfurt they'll bring you to Frankfurt Han which is about an hour and 20 minutes away you can go to Paris but you go to Beauvais with Ryanair which is a good Arab from Paris so their model has been to develop secondary airports they're mainly disused old air bases that they got scattered around Europe so this is what you put your cheap flight with Ryanair will get you Connor McCarthy helped set up Ryan as European Network we just lined up these small airports maybe 10 at a time and then did a bake-off try to pick the top three and basically competitive tension did the rest hrus most of those airports had never seen anything like it in the past but the prospects of them getting a daily flight to London was just far too mouth-watering for them to ignore so how do airlines make money from low fares at Ryan Air it's a strategy of pilot high and sell it cheap Howard Miller is one of the company's deputy chief executives and its chief accountant our objective is to keep our planes full as much at a time as we possibly can so to that end we are always aggressively targeting the maximum number of bones on seats and every flight we're less worried about what the average passenger pays on the basis that we have a very low break-even load factor and the fact that every passenger spends about 13 euros on other things such as hotels car houses etcetera Ryanair's average fare is 40 pounds but that additional revenue including in flight sales it brings the total per passenger up to 52 pounds excluding and passenger taxes on the cost side fuel comes 220 pounds and here's where being a low-cost airline really counts everything else including the staff the planes Airport charges and financing comes 226 pounds which means there's a profit per passenger of six pounds keeping costs low enough to make a profit on low fares is hard work the staff in Ryanair's old cramped offices it means a battle for everything that costs money there is a head of stationery and you you go upstairs and you request what whatever item you want and you usually cross-examined as to whether you actually need them and if it's a pen you're encouraged to go to the local hotel and get them and if it's a if it's staples they're given out by line rather than box so I do banners buying by rolls for the staff in Ryanair and I'm happy to supply hotel pens whenever I can I need a pen from the the silver silver' Hotel in Katowice O'Leary keeps tabs on the bigger items from his desk at the end of the office every Monday at 8:30 senior management is summoned you had a list of items to complete you had a date beside them when the items were given to you if you haven't achieved what's what's on the list then you're in big trouble O'Leary adopted the practice from his mentor Tony Ryan along with some of Ryan's personal style razor-sharp mind easy razor-sharp mouth and you need the ability to decimate somebody fairly quickly if if they weren't thinking in the right direction it was always going to be somebody's turn and if the hate beam came in your direction it wasn't a very pleasant experience the word is that you're pretty aggressive at those meetings I think isn't that there's some of that is sort of firm but he call it water font talk you know I think we tried to have a very open culture in Ryanair I would be critical of people who don't accomplish what they're supposed to accomplish but people are equally critical of me you know and we I think tried to foster a culture in Ryanair where I think the person who gets criticized most at the London morning meetings is me I don't think so maybe he saw that way but no I think it was a pretty one-way traffic yeah initially I suppose I've been in that meeting for 10 years now so I didn't like the kind of loudness of some elements of the meeting but yes I've long long I can't remember the last time I cried in the meeting we've had a few shouts and stalling out but yeah they're very interesting I don't think she's unique I think there be quite a few people grown-man include us I mean nobody added to my knowledge has ever cried at her Monday morning manager meeting including myself but you know we don't we don't hang around it's we don't have this you know it's all we don't hold hands and sing the company song despite being on the receiving end of O'Leary's anger many of his managers have continued working with him for years you could have had the worst gouging of your life at half-past 9:00 in the morning and perhaps 211 he'd be sitting in or in your office having a cup of coffee he's not out there to upset people but it's certainly a life experience and I've developed 2g as a manager because of Michael by 1998 just wait the rest Larry had done well personally too after negotiation with Tony Ryan for almost a quarter of the company's shares do you feel like you've made enough money now I made enough money a long time ago I don't know what is enough after the elation of easyJet's inaugural flight there was a drastic fall in to get sales Stella started getting worried you know we were two months in it wasn't looking good and at that point Stella's pulled out his checkbook and said spend spend spend in fact I think he said spend a million pounds this week or you're fired Andersen splurged a couple of million in six weeks producing a blitz of orange advertising in the press and on television we had to fill the planes we had to fill the plane he was very very basic at that stage we have no reputation we had to advertise the telephone number so people would call and get on there and the flight to fill the plane when you spend those sorts of sums of money you expect an effect and we got nothing the public responded the public got the message people could see that we have substance with easyJet making a splash and Ryanair already established the big elements started getting interested in these new rivals it was the first time that we got some acknowledgement of the business model until that moment the discussion was well these things they don't really work they might not be safe how can they do it for such a low price are they maintaining the aircraft so we went from rubbishing the constant basically to saying it is a valid business model and one who copied British Airways appointed one of its star executives Barbara Cassone to create B A's own budget airline she began by studying the competition we felt that Ryanair was I mean I call it a flying pub it was just all kind of chaotic and a little bit dehumanizing to customers and easyJet was too orange to my taste I thought you know how much orange can one person take British Airways budget airline go study of us took British Airways to court claiming go back Amish easy gentlemen I was trying to put his airline out of business take nothing away from me so Jeff but I didn't copy them and in fact what we did was we we looked at all of the low-cost airlines on Southwest in the US as well as Ryanair and easyJet etcetera and we created her own a third one goes inaugural flight it was Stelios who had the last laugh I was wandering around the call center as the folks were taking bookings and one of them came over to me and said you won't believe who I've just taken a booking for Studios had booked 10 seats for himself somebody called the police the police just laughed we got on the flight and Stelios walked up and down the aisle talking to the passengers we decided to give away free easy jet flights to the passengers we'll go and I think that took the edge out of it because you're giving people something for free people take it enjoy after a couple of years Kassar knees go started making money but it never got a chance to prove itself da sold it to venture capitalists who in turn couldn't resist the offer made to them by none other than Stelios all the stars aligned for easyJet and they very shrewdly took out their most effective competitor by allowing go and easyJet to be merged ba really created a huge competitor for itself which was most unfortunate and and I think the British flying public lost a great product have reversed traditional pricing of air ticket in the past if you waited till the last minute you might get a standby ticket at a bargain price Ryanair aims to sell at least 80% of its seats you see we launched route in January and the first flights were in June we will monitor the bookings each month as we go along and in order to have any 80% of the seats sold by the time the first flight us is flown we will know four to five months out the experience of similar routes that we've had for a number of years that we need to have 5% so by the end of January 15 percent by the end of February and so on we will know whether we're over and are below that target and if we're above it we can increase the fares because we need to slow down the rate of booking or offer below it we need to reduce the fares we track the prices of three flights from London to Berlin as the flight date approaches fares rise but when a flight isn't selling well enough prices are cut to increase sales in the last few days before these flights the British Airways fare rose dramatically leaving Ryanair the cheapest with easyJet in the middle lovely countryside lovely people lovely food Brenda is one of many British expats in the region there's areas that are almost like a little England with lots of activities lots of enjoyable things and I'm sure that community wouldn't have been as large if we weren't near an airport and the low-cost airlines weren't available nearby Limoge airport 80 percent of the traffic is to and from the UK passenger numbers have trebled in the past 10 years and the French talk about a revitalization of the area thanks to the British exit I even boasts its own English cafe if the low cost airlines weren't around my business would definitely suffer for example there are there are lots of Brits who have second homes here so they'll often pop out for the weekend we wouldn't see them I don't think if they had to drive each time just for a few days Sheila Pickering moved to France more than 20 years ago before you could fly cheaply between England and limos it really changed family life because they can just pop over that the family can pop over if we're having an anniversary over the weekend this would never have happened before you know gun ahve the days when I trust you to go down to the cellar fell 500 pounds the stands have gone with the moving on and we're moving on very very fast I think the greatest contribution of the concept of the low-cost airline in Europe at its most idealistic if you like is that it creates an environment where people can cross cross borders easily and frequently however balding may sound it promotes peace if the low-cost revolution has led to peace it's only been achieved through conflict Ryanair and easyJet have argued over which is the cheapest and Ryanair has always admitted it chases controversy as an alternative to paid publicity core of our marketing strategy is always to spend as little money as possible advertising we don't have an advertising agency we don't use any advertising agencies we designed them all ourselves with a group of young kids who get together once or twice so we can come up with ideas for new ads and the more controversial the funnier the more humorous they are the better a classic Ryanair ad featured the Pope whispering to another the 4th Secret of fátima Ryanair paid for it to appear in just one newspaper that ad went all over the world kind of annoyed a lot of people offended some Catholics and it was seen as a you know a really cheeky and I'm kind of pushing the bullshit boat out but you know for the publicity it garnered it was probably the best ad Ryanair has ever placed in in its history tonight on watchdog the boss of Ryanair who says he wishes he could charge extra for fat people and she used the loo budget airlines get plenty of publicity they don't have to pay anything for the BBC's consumers show us send it more than one complaint a day easyJet and the same for Ryanair hello and good evening and welcome to watchdog tonight so many people get caught out and it's very common for the complaints we get to end with you know I will never fly with them again and I want to warn anybody else not to make the same mistake we did Michael O'Leary the rider boss has been listening to all that as long as you're talking about Hasan I know we're doing a good job okay you've done away with check-in desks what's next in many ways Michael Leary is a journalist and a broadcasters dream because he just comes out with fantastic quotes but I think all of us have to be a word that he is very media savvy and he will use us for his own ends if you like height fares don't book Ryanair if you want the guaranteed lowest fares in Europe fly Ryanair it's a very good commercial now welcome to our very special Ryanair right I'm sorry it's a bit O'Leary makes journalist its jobs easy by coming up with stories that write themselves whether or not they're true we are as you know working hard on a plan to charge for the toilets so that we can take myself microreel under them we arrived in to Gatwick and Michael needed to use the bathroom of course we've no money no change so we had to go and buy a can of coke in order to get the money in a course then somebody asked about hidden charges well actually tell you about hidden charges I go to charge to go to the bathroom and of course love Michael says something like that that media coverage is absolutely enormous so it's not it's not what actually the message is is the fact that you're in the media generating lots of free publicity that we're using ultimately to convert into substantial profits Caroline greed must deal to the fallen from O'Leary's remarks he might make a comment in the press whether it's putting porn on the aircraft or toilet you know paying for the toilets or some other he's standing up on aircraft people think they're ridiculous but they do believe it to a certain extent but we all know that that's what my clears and you know I would prefer that the some of the comments weren't made but that's that that's publicity we are still married to clear up once and for all some of the myths you want to charge people to use the point thoughts you want to have people standing up at the back of the plane is that still it's never been a plan would you like to know is there a rule against Orion air staff charging their personal mobiles in the office yes it's one of the great PR initiatives does anybody a paid ban no they all charge at their mobile phones but makes for great PR if man we're so focused on not wasting money that we don't even allow people to charge up their mobile phones today easyJet is launching a new route to Moscow while they've always been seen as rivals easyJet and Ryanair mostly slide at different hours only a small proportion Brits now they're diverging even more easyJet wants to appeal to business travelers Russia's outside the deregulated EU so this route needed government approval what was really good it was that we were awarded this and I think it showed that we have the credibility to fly the route and it is predominantly a business route so I thought it said quite a lot about east jet today the goal is making the most of us last year easyJet started offering the science seats instead of the usual low-cost practice for finding a seat when you board the called annuities make an easyJet more like a traditional airline and moving away from the low-cost we are completely a low-cost airline in our operating model completely we are also a low fares airline to the passenger so what I think a passenger doesn't say is I'm going to fly a low-cost airline today they just don't use that terminology they think yeah low fares good value great service I'm off I'll try you jet in Moscow easyJet's party of journalists and business people are entertained at a local restaurant the highlight is a performance by a couple of easy church cabin do not the things appear to be going well for easy jerk its despite the long running battle over different visions of its future surprisingly its easyJet's founder who's skeptical about how much more can be achieved he's worried that rising fares caused by rising fuel prices and higher charges by airports are eroding the company's profitability you know the the available opportunity to grow this business must have gone down because the costs have gone up as easy Jets biggest shareholder he wants to stop the company buying new planes every airline at the end of the day goes back because it buys one aircraft too many that flies on one unprofitable route and multiply that by a hundred and fifty and you end up like Pan American TWA and other great names of the sky stelios his fears are at odds with easyJet's management the airline not buy any more planes we would be in decline and we believe that we can continue to grow as I said to grow profitably and deliver returns to shareholders welcome easy and for their first flight and more opportunities for more Russians come and see more president much more scope is that the load was all days to grow well average rim now makes more than three or four flights a year in France it's less than two and in Poland it's less than one flight every two years in place if the rest of Europe starts flying as much as the British low-cost airlines should continue to do well but Stelios has his doubts I mean some of these countries that display very low propensity to trouble is because they live in a very beautiful country in the first place remember you live in the UK and you're sort of conditioned over the last three four decades that holiday means getting on an aeroplane and going to the Sun mostly away from your country because your country doesn't have Sun but this doesn't happen in the South of France and in Spain and in Portugal they live in the Sun already McCall insists easyJet can keep growing and beat its biggest low-cost competitor in the all-important opinion of customers the difference between these generally is that we have really good service on board and on the ground and we care about our passengers there's a big difference there you don't think Ryanair cares about a passenger I'll leave you to judge that I think I think we're the airline that people love to hate here there's the sensationalism that comes out of Michael's interactions with the press but underneath the covers were an incredibly efficient airline we're today announcing and celebrating four new routes here at candidature both easyJet and British Airways the strategy remains what it's been since they Larry took over we cannot offer a little fair without having a really little car space so that means if we have to get up in the morning and have a fight with everybody we will we're absolutely determined to do that any of the carriers that we have seen that have failed have all lost one thing they lost control of their car space and you do that in this industry at your peril this is a very very competitive industry very very capital-intensive and if you're not in control your car space you've got lots of problems coming your way Ryanair has demonstrated its confidence in the future with an order for a hundred and seventy-five new planes from Boeing I still have this vision that in time the flights would be free but we'll get paid for all the other optional services around now we're not quite at that level yet but you can really begin to say to people around the UK and Europe your flight will cost twenty quid in five years time but it costs ten quid and then in ten years time it might cost five quid then we'll be carrying five hundred million passengers and why not a realistic ambition and one of the most successful executives in the business or just another piece of O'Leary's spin you decide how many more cities today then two more cities today we do next is Wroclaw and then back home Dublin should be back in the office by about four o'clock these work has to start

Contents

Formation

The airline was established in 1995, the first company in what would later become the easyGroup conglomerate. It was launched by Greek Cypriot businessman Stelios Haji-Ioannou with two wet leased Boeing 737-200 aircraft, initially operating two routes: London Luton Airport to Glasgow and Edinburgh. In April 1996, the first wholly owned aircraft was delivered to the airline, enabling its first international route, to Amsterdam. Until October 1997, the aircraft were operated by GB Airways and subsequently by Air Foyle, as easyJet had not yet received its Air Operator's Certificate.[17]

EasyJet was floated on the London Stock Exchange on 5 November 2000.[17] In October 2004 the FL Group, owner of the airlines Icelandair and Sterling, purchased an 8.4% stake in the airline.[18] Over the course of 2005, FL increased its share in the company periodically to 16.9%,[18] fuelling speculation that it would mount a takeover bid for the UK carrier.[19] However, in April 2006 the threat of takeover receded as FL sold its stake for €325 million, securing a profit of €140m on its investment.[20]

Expansion and acquisitions

In March 1998, easyJet purchased a 40% stake in Swiss charter airline TEA Basle for three million Swiss francs. The airline was renamed easyJet Switzerland and commenced franchise services on 1 April 1999, having relocated its headquarters to Geneva International Airport. This was easyJet's first new base outside the United Kingdom.[17] In 2002, rival airline Go Fly was purchased for £374 million; the airline inherited three new bases from Go, at Bristol Airport, East Midlands Airport and London Stansted Airport. The acquisition of Go almost doubled the number of Boeing 737-300 aircraft in the easyJet fleet.[11][21]

In 2002, the airline opened its base at Gatwick Airport, and between 2003 and 2007 opened bases in Germany, France, Italy and Spain, establishing a presence in continental Europe.[17] In 2007, the airline claimed to be operating more flights per day than any other European airline.[22]

On 25 October 2007 easyJet purchased the entire share capital of GB Airways from the Bland Group.[23] The deal was worth £103.5 million, and was used by the airline to expand operations at Gatwick[24] and to establish a base at Manchester Airport.[12][25][26][27][28]

In June 2011, the airline opened its eleventh British base – at London Southend Airport, offering flights to Alicante, Amsterdam, Barcelona, Belfast, Faro, Málaga, Jersey, Palma de Majorca and Ibiza.[29]

In March 2013, the airline was promoted to the FTSE 100 and launched its 100th route from Gatwick Airport, offering flights directly from London to Moscow.[30]

In July 2017 easyJet announced it would open a new European headquarters in Austria to enable it to operate after Brexit.[31]

On 28 October 2017, easyJet announced it will lease 25 former Air Berlin A320 aircraft to operate across easyJet Europe's network, under its European AOC. Several of these aircraft will be based at Berlin-Tegel Airport, where easyJet is taking over some of Air Berlin's old services. Previously EasyJet only operated from Berlin Schönefeld Airport.[32]

Corporate affairs

Business strategy

EasyJet, like Ryanair, uses a business model pioneered by Southwest Airlines. Both airlines have adapted this model for the European market through further cost-cutting measures, such as not selling connecting flights or providing complimentary snacks on board. The key points of this business model are high aircraft utilisation, quick turnaround times, charging for extras (such as priority boarding, hold baggage, and food) and keeping operating costs low.[33] One main difference easyJet and Ryanair have from Southwest is they both fly a young fleet of aircraft. Southwest has an average fleet age of 11.9 years[34] whereas Ryanair's and easyJet's average fleet ages are just a little over six years each.[35]

Initially, easyJet's employment strategy was to maintain control with minimal union involvement. In recent years, the airline has adopted a different approach with a strategy in place to accommodate unions.[22]

Originally, much like Southwest, easyJet did not allocate seats – passengers took any available seats, with the option to pay for "Speedy Boarding", which allowed them to be first onto the aircraft. Since 2012, all passengers are allocated numbered seats before boarding commences, as it was found that this does not slow down boarding times and could earn more revenue than Speedy Boarding. Passengers can pay an additional fee for certain seats such as the front few rows and overwing seats (which have extra legroom).[36]

Financial performance

easyJet financial performance
Year ended Passengers flown[nb 1] Load factor Turnover (£m) Profit/loss before tax (£m) Net profit/loss (£m) Basic EPS (p)
30 September 2018 88,454,611 92.9% 5,898 578 466 118.3
30 September 2017 80,249,672 92.6% 5,047 408 325 82.5
30 September 2016 73,137,826 91.6% 4,669 495 427 108.4
30 September 2015 68,629,825 91.5% 4,686 686 548 139.1
30 September 2014 64,769,065 90.6% 4,527 581 450 114.5
30 September 2013 60,757,809 89.3% 4,258 478 398 101.3
30 September 2012 58,399,840 88.7% 3,854 317 255 62.5
30 September 2011 54,509,271 87.3% 3,452 248 225 52.5
30 September 2010 48,754,366 87.0% 2,973.1 154.0 121.3 28.4
30 September 2009 45,164,279 85.5% 2,666.8 54.7 71.2 16.9
30 September 2008 43,659,478 84.1% 2,362.8 110.2 83.2 19.8
30 September 2007 37,230,079 83.7% 1,797.2 201.9 152.3 36.62
30 September 2006 32,953,287 84.8% 1,619.7 129.2 94.1 23.18
30 September 2005 29,557,640 85.2% 1,314.4 67.9 42.6 10.68
30 September 2004 24,343,649 84.5% 1,091.0 62.2 41.1 10.34
30 September 2003 20,332,973 84.1% 931.8 51.5 32.4 8.24
30 September 2002 11,350,350 84.8% 551.8 71.6 49.0 14.61
30 September 2001 7,115,147 83.03% 356.9 40.1 37.9 15.2
30 September 2000 5,600,000 263.7 22.1 22.1 11.9

Head office

Hangar 89 at London Luton Airport, easyJet head office
Hangar 89 at London Luton Airport, easyJet head office

EasyJet's head office is Hangar 89 (H89), a building located on the grounds of London Luton Airport in Luton, Bedfordshire; the hangar is located 150 metres (490 ft) from easyLand, the previous headquarters of the airline. Hangar 89, built in 1974, has 30,000 square feet (2,800 m2) of office space and can house three aircraft the size of an Airbus A319 at one time. When easyJet received H89, it had a 1970s-style office setup. The airline modernised the building and painted it orange.[37]

Marketing

EasyJet's early marketing strategy was based on "making flying as affordable as a pair of jeans" and urged travellers to "cut out the travel agent". Its early advertising consisted of little more than the airline's telephone booking number painted in bright orange on the side of its aircraft.[17] The specific color that easyJet uses closely resembles that of the telecommunications corporation Orange and was a subject of dispute between the two companies in 2004 when easyGroup launched a mobile phone subsidiary, easyMobile.[38][39]

The Airline TV series created by LWT and filmed between 1999 and 2007 made easyJet a household name in the United Kingdom. The series, while not always portraying the airline in a positive light, did much to promote it during this time.[40] The airline has used a number of slogans since its establishment, including "The Web's Favourite Airline", "Come on, let's fly" and "To Fly, To Save" (a parody of British Airways' slogan "To Fly, To Serve"). This was then followed by "[....] by easyJet", with "Europe by easyJet" and "business by easyJet" being the most widely used. It currently uses the slogan "This is Generation easyJet".[41]

Environment

In June 2007, easyJet announced plans for construction of its own airliner, dubbed EcoJet. Featuring propfan engines, the EcoJet would feature an improvement in fuel efficiency. It would be constructed with extensive use of carbon fibre composite material. The date for the first flight was to be in 2015.[42]

The airline offers carbon offsetting to its customers' trips for a surcharge via a calculator that estimates a passenger's carbon footprint.[43]

In February 2011, the airline painted eight of its aircraft with a lightweight, thin "revolutionary nano technology coating" polymer. It works by reducing build-up of debris and reduces drag across the surface of the aircraft, thus reducing the fuel bill. It was estimated the airline could save 1–2% annually, equating to a £14 million reduction in fuel costs. The coating has already been used on US military aircraft and if successful easyJet would apply the paint to its whole fleet.[44]

Criticism

EasyJet has been criticised in Germany for not observing European Union law on compensation (and assistance to passengers) in cases of denied boarding, delays or cancellations (Regulation 261/2004). When flights are cancelled, passengers are supposed to be reimbursed within one week. In 2006, the airline did not always refund tickets in a timely fashion. Passengers occasionally had to wait longer for reimbursement of their expenses.[45][46]

EasyJet has campaigned to replace the air passenger duty (APD) tax in the UK with a new tax that would vary depending on distance travelled and aircraft type.[47]

In July 2008, the United Kingdom Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) criticised a press campaign by the airline, over a misleading environmental claim that its aircraft released 22% fewer emissions than rival airlines. The figures used were not based on emissions produced by an easyJet aircraft or emissions produced by the airline overall as the advertisement implied, and ASA declared that the airline had broken advertising rules. The judgement that followed reprimanded the airline in April 2007 after it made comments that its aircraft created 30% less pollution per passenger than some of its rivals.[48]

In July 2011, the airline tried to refuse carriage of a boy with muscular dystrophy because he had an electric wheelchair.[49] In separate incidents in 2012, paralympians received similar treatment,[50] and a French court found the airline guilty of three counts of disability discrimination.[51] In January 2017 the company was fined €60,000 by another French court because it had refused to allow a disabled passenger to board in 2010. The company cited security concerns and internal regulations; and said it would not appeal against the ruling.[52]

In September 2013, a passenger who sent a tweet complaining about the airline after his flight was delayed said he was initially told he would not be allowed to board the aircraft because of the posting.[53]

European AOC

Following the UK's referendum vote to leave the European Union, easyJet announced plan to establish an Air Operator Certificate (AOC) in another EU member state. This will secure the flying rights of the 30% of easyJet's network that remains wholly within and between EU states, excluding the UK. easyJet expects a one-off cost of around £10 million over two years with up to £5 million incurred in the 2017 financial year. The primary driver of the cost is the re-registering of aircraft in an EU AOC jurisdiction.[54]

In July 2017, easyJet announced that it has applied for, and was subsequently granted by the Ministry of Transport, an Austrian Air Operator Certificate (AOC) and operating permit, thereby establishing easyJet Europe. The new airline is headquartered in Vienna, and will allow easyJet to continue operating flights across and within European countries after the UK leaves the EU. The first aircraft, an Airbus A320, was re-registered as OE-IVA.[55]

EasyJet announced that there will be no job losses in the UK, as the staff to be employed by easyJet Europe are already based in the EU27. easyJet UK staff will continue to be based in Luton. The group will thus comprise three airlines, easyJet UK, easyJet Europe, and easyJet Switzerland, all of which are owned by easyJet plc, which is itself EU owned and controlled, listed on the London Stock Exchange, and based in the UK.[56] In May 2018, easyJet confirmed that it was very close to achieving the required majority EU27 share ownership, and that the UK government will nevertheless continue to consider it as a UK airline.[57]

Destinations

easyJet serves 136 destinations (as of November 2018).[58][59]

Codeshare agreements

In 2013 easyJet entered a commercial agreement with Transaero Airlines to set up a codeshare agreement[60][61] whereby Transaero acquired the right to sell a certain number of seats on easyJet's Moscow (Domodedovo) – London (Gatwick) route. This was the first codeshare agreement for easyJet and it terminated when Transaero Airlines ceased to operate in October 2015.[62] easyJet ceased all flights to Moscow in March 2016.[63]

easyJet has a reward miles sharing agreement with Emirates. easyJet's website states: "Skywards members will be able to use their Skywards Miles towards any easyJet flights. Flying with Emirates to one of over 125 destinations across 76 countries including Dubai, Singapore, Delhi, Bangkok, Sydney and Cape Town will earn you miles to make connecting across Europe on our network of 600 routes between 130 airports in over 30 countries more affordable."[64]

Fleet

easyJet Airbus A319 wearing the former livery
easyJet Airbus A319 wearing the former livery
Former easyJet Boeing 737-204 seen in Zürich, Switzerland in January 1997.
Former easyJet Boeing 737-204 seen in Zürich, Switzerland in January 1997.

EasyJet's fleet comprises entirely Airbus aircraft. The total easyJet fleet (including easyJet, easyJet Switzerland and easyJet Europe) consists of the following aircraft as of April 2019:[65][66]

easyJet Fleet
Aircraft In
Service
Orders Passengers

(Economy)

Notes
Airbus A319-100 125 156 45 Operated by easyJet Europe
7 Operated by Easyjet Switzerland
Airbus A320-200 169 180 91 Operated by easyJet Europe
21 Operated by Easyjet Switzerland
186
Airbus A320neo 22 95 186
Airbus A321neo 5 25 235 Deliveries from July 2018.[67] In Airbus Cabin Flex (ACF) configuration.[68]
Total 321 120

By July 2019 all flights operating within the European Union will be operated by sister company easyJet Europe, which operates 40 Airbus A319 and 89 Airbus A320 aircraft.[69] Sister company easyJet Switzerland operates 9 Airbus A319 and 18 Airbus A320 aircraft.[70]

Fleet strategy and aircraft orders

In common with other low-cost carriers, easyJet has a strategy of operating just one aircraft type. Initially it used Boeing 737 aircraft exclusively, but in October 2002 it ordered 120 Airbus A319 aircraft, plus 120 options.[17][71] Since then, the Boeings have been phased out and all orders have been from the Airbus A320 family. Through the acquisition of GB Airways, easyJet inherited nine Airbus A320 and six Airbus A321 aircraft. This gave the airline some time to evaluate the feasibility of operating these larger aircraft. Based on this evaluation, easyJet exchanged 25 A319 orders for A320s in July 2008 and later removed the A321 aircraft from the fleet.[12][25][27][28]

On 18 June 2013 the airline announced an intention to acquire – subject to shareholder approval – 35 Airbus A320 aircraft, for delivery between 2015 and 2017, and 100 Airbus A320neo aircraft for delivery between 2017 and 2022.[72] As part of the agreement the airline will have purchase rights on a further 100 A320neo aircraft.[72] The current generation A320s and fifty of the A320neos will replace current A319 aircraft.[72]

On 15 May 2017, easyJet announced the conversion of 30 A320neo orders into A321neo aircraft to be used on busier routes. The then-CEO of EasyJet, Carolyn McCall, said the "bigger planes would help easyJet increase capacity in slot-constrained airports at peak times, such as Geneva, Amsterdam and London Gatwick". She added that the A321neos would help to cut costs by 9 percent.[73] The company took delivery of the first A321neo on 18 July 2018 at the Farnborough International Airshow.[74]

On 20 November 2018 easyJet ordered an additional 17 A320neos, taking their total NEO order including the A321neo to 147.[75]

Historical Fleet

easyJet has previously operated the following aircraft:[76]

easyJet Historical Fleet
Aircraft Introduced Retired Notes
Airbus A321-200 2008 2010 Inherited from GB Airways
Boeing 737-300 1995 2006 Replaced by A319s
Boeing 737-700 2000 2011 Replaced by A319s and A320s

Services

Booking

Boeing 737-33V in telephone number livery
Boeing 737-33V in telephone number livery

Initially booking was by telephone only, with all of the airline's aircraft painted with the booking telephone number. There is no incentive for travel agents to book flights on the airline because it does not pay commissions, a standard practice for low-cost carriers.[17]

In December 1997, one of easyJet's design and advertising agencies suggested to Stelios Haji-Ioannou that he should consider trialling a website for direct bookings. Haji-Ioannou's reply was "The Internet is for nerds, it will never make money for my business!". Other executives of the airline saw the potential and approved a website trial involving putting a different telephone reservations number on the website, to track success. Once Haji-Ioannou saw the results he changed his mind and an e-commerce website capable of offering real-time online booking went live in April 1998—the first such website for a low-cost carrier in Europe.[17][77][78]

In December 2001, the airline switched from a third-party reservation system to an in-house system.[79] Internet bookings were priced cheaper than booking by telephone, to reflect the reduced call centre costs; and the aircraft were repainted with the web address. Within a year over 50% of bookings were made using the website; by April 2004 the figure had jumped to 98%.[17]

Cabin and onboard services

easyJet Airbus A319 cabin
easyJet Airbus A319 cabin

Easyjet's aircraft cabins are configured in a single class, high density layout.[80]

The airline's main fleet, comprising Airbus A319, A320/A320neo and A321neo aircraft, carry up to 156, 180/186 and 235 passengers respectively, depending on layout. A typical Airbus A319 carries approximately 140 passengers in a single class configuration, but as the airline does not serve meals on its shorter flights, it opted for smaller galleys and had a lavatory installed in unused space at the rear of the aircraft. The space saved by having smaller galleys allowed for the installation of 156 seats. Due to this seating arrangement, to satisfy safety requirements the airline's Airbus A319 aircraft have two pairs of overwing exits, instead of the standard one-pair configuration found on most Airbus A319 aircraft.[66][81][82]

EasyJet does not provide complimentary meals or drinks on its flights (except for some occasional charter flights operated by the airline). Passengers may purchase items on board from the "easyJet Bistro" buy on board programme.[83] Onboard sales are an important part of the airline's ancillary revenue; gifts such as fragrances, cosmetics, gadgets and easyJet-branded items are sold on board, as well as tickets for airport transfer services or train tickets. The airline's monthly inflight magazine is called The Traveller.[84]

The airline had previously provided in-flight entertainment (IFE) in some aircraft (the ex GB Airways fleet), using drop-down screens on some Airbus aircraft; IFE has now been discontinued. The airline offers headphones for purchase, along with a travel pillow and eyeshades, subject to stock. In 2017 'Air Time' was introduced on some easyJet Switzerland flights - enabling passengers to connect to watch a selection of films and read books through an on-board WiFi network. The service is provided by Rakuten.[85]

Frequent flyer, business travel, and loyalty products

Three distinct loyalty products are offered, tailored towards business and frequent flyers. These are Flexi Fare, easyJet Plus and a new frequent traveller loyalty programme called Flight Club. Flexi Fare[86] is a type of ticket that is usually more expensive than the regular fare and comparable to a business ticket with other airlines. This ticket offers additional flexibility, including unlimited free date changes within a set period, free route changes, complimentary checked baggage (1x20kg), an increased carry-on baggage allowance, and a £7 on board refreshment voucher. easyJet Plus is an annual subscription product targeted at frequent flyers,[87] both business and leisure. This service offers free allocated seating (including extra legroom), priority check-in, fast track security, speedy boarding and extra cabin baggage. The airline's loyalty programme is called Flight Club.[88]

easyJet Hotels and easyJet Holidays

On 14 December 2004, easyJet and Hotelopia, a subsidiary of First Choice Holidays, launched the co-branded easyJetHotels accommodation booking service. easyJetHotels offers accommodation products throughout the airline's network. Customers booking flights through the airline's website are provided with quotes for a number of hotels at their destination. Alternatively, customers can book accommodation separately at the easyJetHotels website.[89][90]

On 28 June 2007, the airline expanded its relationship with Hotelopia by launching easyJetHolidays, which offers Travel Trust Association protected package holidays made up of easyJet flights and Hotelopia accommodation products.[91][92]

On 6 November 2010, the airline started a venture with Low Cost Travel Group, to offer flights dynamically packaged with Low Cost Travel Group's accommodation through the easyJet Holidays website. As of March 2011, easyJet Holidays has provided holidays and city breaks to all of the airline's routes.[93]

Sponsorship

The airline sponsored Luton Town F.C. from the 2009–10 season to the end of 2015–16 season.[94] The airline and Manchester Airport have also jointly sponsored Manchester Pride in 2013 and 2014.[95]

Notes

  1. ^ Passengers = Earned seats flown, including "no-shows" (empty paid seats), promotional seats and those provided to staff for business travel, for both EasyJet UK and EasyJet Switzerland

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Bibliography

  • Jones, Lois (2007). EasyJet: the Story of Britain's Biggest Low-Cost Airline. London: Aurum Press. ISBN 978-1-84513-247-7.

External links

Media related to EasyJet at Wikimedia Commons

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