• A Ryanair flight from Edinburgh to Gran Canaria had to divert to Faro after two male family members began arguing and physically fighting mid-flight.
  • The two passengers were drunk and detained by police upon arrival in Faro.
  • Unruly passengers can face fines and a prison sentence of up to five years.

A Ryanair flight from Edinburgh to Gran Canaria had to divert after a quarrel broke out onboard between two family members. The two male passengers reportedly argued and became violent mid-flight, forcing the plane to land in Faro.

Family feud forces Ryanair flight diversion

On Friday, Ryanair Flight FR6698 from Edinburgh Airport (EDI) to Gran Canaria Airport (LPA) departed early in the morning at 06:00 and was due to land in Gran Canaria at 10:45 local time. However, mid-way through the flight, two passengers began arguing with one another before the altercation became physical.

As a result, the aircraft - a Boeing 737 MAX 8 - diverted to Faro Airport (FAO), and its crew called ahead for police assistance. The aircraft was met by local police, who promptly removed the two offending passengers - a spokesperson for the police confirmed that the two passengers were family members and were both male.

The spokesperson told The Sun,

"Two passengers, family members to each other, started arguing and beating each other during the mentioned flight, which resulted in the commander deciding to diverge to flight to Faro Airport. Following the orders of the commander, they were extracted from the plane at our airport and were identified by our police force to complete a police report. It was not a major incident and did not cause any danger to the aircraft or its passengers."

After spending around an hour on the ground in Faro, the flight took off just after 10:00 and arrived in Gran Canaria at 11:53, a delay of just over an hour for passengers.

A Ryanair spokesperson added,

"This flight from Edinburgh to Gran Canaria diverted to Faro after a small number of passengers became disruptive onboard. Crew called ahead for police assistance and the passengers were removed from the aircraft by local police before this flight continued safely to Gran Canaria."

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Both men reportedly drunk

Even though it was a 06:00 departure, the two men involved in the fight were both said to be inebriated. At this stage, very little else is known about the incident, and no social media footage exists of the familial fisticuffs.

Ryanair Boeing 737 MAX 8-200
Photo: kamilpetran/Shutterstock

According to the UK's Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), unruly passengers face a maximum fine of £2,000 ($2,550) and up to two years in prison, rising to five years if the safety of the aircraft is endangered. The diversion will have cost Ryanair a lot more than any fine the passengers may receive - the CAA estimates diversions typically cost airlines from £10,000 ($12,750) - £80,000 ($102,000), with Ryanair's likely to be on the lower end in this instance.

In 2022, incidents involving disruptive passengers flown by UK-based airlines more than tripled compared to 2019. There were over 1,000 such incidents reported to the CAA last year, forcing MPs to consider harsher punishments like no-fly lists.

Ryanair's record-breaking summer

In July, the Irish carrier managed to exceed 18 million passengers carried for the first time in its history, smashing its previous record in June. The airline carried 18.7 million passengers last month, up from 17.4 million passengers in June.

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From April 2023 to the end of March 2024, the ultra-low-cost carrier expects to hit over 183 million passengers served, 9% higher than last year.

What is the worst incident you have ever seen on a Ryanair flight? Let us know your stories in the comments.

Source: The Sun

  • Ryanair Boeing 737
    Photo: Ryanair
    IATA/ICAO Code:
    Airline Type:
    Low-Cost Carrier
    Dublin Airport, London Stansted Airport, Milan Bergamo Airport
    Year Founded:
    Airline Group:
    Ryanair Group
    Eddie Wilson