Ryanair demands schoolgirl buys seat for violin

A 12-year-old schoolgirl and her father missed a Ryanair flight after check-in staff told them they would have to buy a seat for her violin.

Francesca and Harmen Rijks were told they would not be able to store the instrument in the overhead lockers, and that they would need to pay £190 for an extra seat. By the time they agreed to pay the fee they were too late to board.

The pair, who were returning home from Weeze in Germany, were left to book a flight with easyJet at a cost of £250. Francesca was able to take her violin on board with no problems.

Mr Rijks is demanding a refund from Ryanair and warning musicians against using the airline.

Ryanair said musical instruments that conform to its hand-luggage guidelines can be carried on board. It stated that larger instruments would require their own seats if customers refuse to put them in the hold.

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