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Beware of ripoff charges at Knock airport

Amiens
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Beware of ripoff charges at Knock airport

i am more than happy to pay for the development of all airports I use, and that cost is one of the items very correctly included in airport taxes/fees. But Knock airport has come up with a sneaky semantic trick: they impose a supplementary "development tax", thatbthey spring at the last minute on the poor unsuspecting passangers that have the misfortune to be trapped there. It's a dirty trick so they can appear to be cheaper then they really are when people are purchasing their tickets and choosing their airports!

It is also wrong for them to try to blame the lack of transparency on the airlines: if they were even trying to be honest about it, they would have posted a clear warning on their website, which they have not done.

ALL airport charges and fees should be included in the boarding fee, and any departure from this classic structure should CLEARLY DIVULGED to passengers.

I will never fly this airport again.

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161. Re: Beware of ripoff charges at Knock airport

I know the airport at San Jose in Costa Rica charges a departure fee...it was around $10 years ago when we were there. I was fully aware of it since I researched my trip on trip advisor and found it there. Yes, Knock Airport needs to figure out a way to inform people in advance. Not sure of how but it seems there are some unhappy people out there due to this.

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162. Re: Beware of ripoff charges at Knock airport

This is what I don't understand.

From Ireland West Airport (Knock) web site re Development Fee:

....All airports charge for their services. Most collect fees through the airlines which you see included as taxes, fees and charges at the time of booking and paying for your airline ticket.

Our Development Fee forms part of our overall service charges, and we choose to charge this fee in an open and transparent manner....

I'm betting if you polled anyone who travels out of Knock airport, not a single person would say:

I want you to continue charging that Euro 10 Development Fee, separately - In the interests of 'an open and transparent manner' or for any other reason.

If people were given the option, I'll wager just for convenience alone, they would say, make it an all-in price.

The negative public relations aspect must be something the airport authorities don't care about or choose to ignore.

Seems such an easy fix with the payoff of lots of goodwill.

By the way, I've happily flown many times from Knock to various UK airports and am delighted the airport is located where it is!

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163. Re: Beware of ripoff charges at Knock airport

I absolutely agree as we have just been ripped off. £30 for 3 of us to go through or we couldnt catch our flight. No mention of this when we booked our flights. I will never use Knock airport again.

London, United...
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164. Re: Beware of ripoff charges at Knock airport

"Knock Airport needs to figure out a way to inform people in advance. Not sure of how but it seems there are some unhappy people out there due to this."

That's a solved problem. Almost every other airport on the continent charges the Airline, who passes the charge on as part of the fare.

The only disadvantage I've heard of is that airlines wouldn't be able to lie to their passengers by posting a fare that doesn't include all mandatory charges.

Heysham, United...
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165. Re: Beware of ripoff charges at Knock airport

Totally agree - husband was none to pleased to be asked for this fee before going to departure lounge (E12) I think, as a family of four travelling it turned out to be over £40 - good job we had a credit card with us!!

Galway, Ireland
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166. Re: Beware of ripoff charges at Knock airport

It's time this was stopped maybe we could start a petition i don't know how to do it

Boston...
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167. Re: Beware of ripoff charges at Knock airport

I have dozens of relations in England who have been using Knock Airport for years......some of them are over and back 4 or 5 times a year. The development fee isnt an issue for them because they know about it and have been paying it for years. The convenience of the airport to their final destination in Mayo makes it a no brainer. The airport really needs to figure out a way for the airlines to build this fee into their ticket price, or flash something on the screen before the traveller hits "purchase". People dont seem to mind if they know about it, but they hate feeling as if they are getting ripped off

Ballina, Ireland
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168. Re: Beware of ripoff charges at Knock airport

I use Knock all the time. The development fee is clearly stated on every airlines website, and an explanation of why it is charged is on the Ireland West website. The development fee is needed to maintain and expand the airport. The improvements are very evident. Knock is owned by a private company and is not supported much by government. I live innthe West of Ireland and I am only hapoy to pay the fee to keep the airport on track. Without it, the West would be lost. If you object to paying the fee, I believe that your payment will be waived if you voice your objection in a civil manner. I have seen this happen.

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169. Re: Beware of ripoff charges at Knock airport

I can understand why the Celtic Critic and many compatriots living in the West of Ireland might be happy to pay the charge in return for having an airport within easy reach. I also understand that the airport does not benefit from government funding in the way that some of the major Irish airports do. But my perspective is that of a UK traveller. I took a quick look at Ryanair and Aer Lingus online booking pages this morning and I give credit that Aer Lingus make specific mention of the Development Fee during the booking process. Regrettably this was not apparent to me with Ryanair. So some progress, but not quite there yet?

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170. Re: Beware of ripoff charges at Knock airport

A few facts to inform the complaints – while I understand the surprise with something outside the norm, it is in no way a money grab! The airport simply wouldn't exist to bring direct access to the relatively low population West of Ireland without the charge.

IWAK isn't like many other airports:

It is not a state airport. Not directly funded.

The airport is run by a charitable trust with the aim of allowing direct air access to the north-west and regional development of West of Ireland, any profit is reinvested.

It receives minimal government subvention covering operating losses only (OPEX grant)

It receives some capital investment and funding levels were cut in recent years and it must 90% self-fund significant capital and security investment (EU rules).

€15m is being spent on runway and terminal upgrades in 2018.

A report some years back showed operating costs were then in the region of €14m pa with aviation services (airline charges, retail etc) income falling far short appx €8m. The departure fee generated appx €3m making up some of the shortfall.

The airport would close without that income stream.

It operates a low-cost airline model to compete for scarce aircraft against far larger airports and city regions with higher demand and route development budgets. They maintain Ryanair, Flybe, AerLingus etc on otherwise marginal profit routes by charging low fees and allowing the airlines keep ticket costs low to attract passengers. Those airlines won't operate some of these thinner routes into IWAK if high fees are charged.

Those airlines are passing on higher fees at other airports to the passengers, but as it is part of the ticket it isn't noticed.

IWAK is running on a very very lean base in comparison to other airports (100 staff, small management team, staff job-sharing, short single day shift)

It must self-fund all the behind the scenes operations of a modern airport, many of which are stat funded at competing airports (ATC services & Training, Fire & Rescue station & Training, Aircraft Handling and Equipment, Terminal facilities, Customs & Security, Cat II Runway Lighting & Navigational aids, Operations, Route Dev & Marketing, Energy, Car Parking, IT / Comms Services, Insurance & Legal, Wages etc

Airports business plan aims to grow traffic to pass 1m passenger pa mark in near future.

This is internationally considered the very minimum level needed to grow revenue, have leverage with airlines to pass on fees and become self-funding.

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