Ryanair has scrapped its late summer schedule to the Greek islands of Rhodes and Kos after a row with Greek tourism authorities, according to Travel Weekly. The airline has blamed its decision on a row over a marketing campaign to promote Ryanair routes to the islands.
A total of 82 flights a week will be cut a month before the end of the summer season, meaning thousands of holidaymakers will be left to make alternative arrangements.
The airline's decision has come as tourism authorities and industry bodies across Greece struggle to cope with lack of funds amid the country's economic crisis.
currently flies to Rhodes from Stansted, East Midlands, Bournemouth in Liverpool, and to Kos from Stansted, Leeds Bradford and Liverpool.
These flights will be pulled from 2 October, despite being scheduled until early November, the traditional end of the summer season.
An airline spokesman said: "Ryanair intended to operate the routes to the end of the summer. However, Detap [a Greek Tourism enterprise] and the mayor of Kos reneged on an agreement to jointly promote our flights."
Meanwhile travel companies are making contingency plans in the light of Greece’s budget crisis which could affect passengers’ holiday plans this summer. Britain's two biggest package holiday companies are planning what to do if Greece drops out of the euro.
, which owns Thomson and First Choice, and Thomas Cook
have signed long-term deals with Greek hotels and resorts based on contracts with a euro price.
A return to the drachma would mean the contracts would have to be renegotiated and, in theory, holidaymakers heading to Greece might find they are turned away if there is no agreement.
TUI Travel said it had ‘contingency plans’ in place should Greece drop the common currency. Thomas Cook Group said it was also working closely with hotels and other suppliers to position itself for a possible euro exit, reported Mail Online. It is not yet clear whether holiday flights will be affected.
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