Ryanair slashes a THIRD of its flights in January

RYANAIR has slashed a third of its flights in January due to Omicron.

The budget airline has revealed the new Covid variant and travel restrictions across Europe have prompted it to cancel flights.

The airline reported it has seen a huge decline in Christmas and New Year bookings as passengers choose not to travel, or restrictions prevent them from doing so.

The sudden downturn has caused Ryanair to cut its planned January schedule capacity by a third.

The ban on Brits travelling to France and Germany, and the suspension of all EU flights to and from Morocco has hit the airline hard.

A spokesman for Ryanair said: "The impact of these recent government travel restrictions, in particular last weekend's ban on UK arrivals into France and Germany, and the suspension of all EU flights to/from Morocco has lowered Ryanair's expected December traffic from 10-11m, to a lower range of between 9m-9.5m.

"In responding to these restrictions, Ryanair has now cut its January capacity by 33 per cent, reducing its expected January traffic from approximately 10m to 6-7m."

The airline said it has not made any decisions about cancelling flights beyond January, and it will look at travel restrictions nearer the time before it decides.

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A spokesman said: "In light of the current uncertainty about the Omicron variant and intra Europe travel restrictions, no schedule cutbacks have yet been decided for February or March 2022.

"These schedules will be revisited in January as more scientific information becomes available on the Omicron variant, its impact on hospitalisations, European population and/or travel restrictions in February or March."

Ryanair is not the only airline that has cancelled flights amid reduced demand for air travel caused by the pandemic.

British Airways has scrapped more than 2,000 flights from its schedule until March.

The decision has affected both domestic routes like London to Belfast and transcontinental flights like London to Cape Town. Affected passengers will be able to receive a full refund or swap flights.

The boss of TUI warned his firm could be the next airline to cancel flights due to Covid.

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Here is the full list of countries Brits are banned from due to Covid restrictions.

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