Ryanair is taking petty to another level as the company has allegedly placed a ban on passengers who received refunds from their credit card companies if they missed flights due to Covid-19.

The ban is for passengers who purchased non-refundable tickets who were either unable or not willing to fly because of travel restrictions imposed by many local governments.

So, how many passengers are impacted by this?  Ryanair told CNN Business less than 1,000 people who “chose not to travel and then unlawfully processed chargebacks via their credit card company” will be affected by this.

The airline says barred passengers will have to “settle their outstanding” debt before they can fly again, according to the personal finance website, MoneySavingExpert, investigated and reported the claims first.  

According to the publication, the three passengers they spoke to were all using American Express cards.

A spokesperson from American Express said it reviews all refund claims “carefully and fairly, and on a case-by-case basis with the merchant and card member.”

Customers are pushing back, stating that the airline refused to give them refunds despite guidance from the Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Office (FCDO) not to travel. Many of them turned to their credit card companies and banks to dispute the transactions as a last resort to reclaim their money in what is known as a chargeback.

Some customers now accuse the company of ‘blackmail” for requesting payment.

Many airlines, including British Airways, Virgin Atlantic, and Easyjet, allowed passengers to rebook missed flights and even offered vouchers to use at a later time.

It’s unclear why Ryanair did not do the same for some of its passengers.

To make matters worse, Britain’s antitrust regulator recently dropped its investigation into whether Ryanair and British Airways broke the law by refusing to refund customers for flights they weren’t able to take during lockdowns.

It concluded that the law does not provide passengers who were prevented from flying by travel restrictions with a sufficiently clear right to a refund.