Budget airline Ryanair exposed for paying women over 70 percent less than men

Cabin crew on RyanAir.
RyanAir has just 8 female pilots. Photo credit: Getty Images.

Companies in the United Kingdom with more than 250 employees have been forced to release information relating to how much they pay men compared to women as part of a government effort to close the gender pay gap.

Budget airline Ryanair, which frequently makes headlines for its cost-cutting style of operation, has been exposed as a big offender when it comes to what it pays female staff compared to male staff.

Ryanair's female staff median hourly rate is 71.8 percent lower than men who work for the company.

Breaking that down, it means women get paid 28p for every £1 that men earn.

Only 3 percent of the workers in the top pay grade are female.

Ryanair has 554 UK-based pilots; just 8 of them are female.

Two-thirds of the lower-paid cabin crew are female.


Other airlines reported better figures however, but none reported they had achieved pay equality.

British Airways female employees have a median hourly rate that's 10 percent lower than men working at the airline, and Virgin Atlantic's median hourly rate for females was 27.2 percent lower than the men's hourly rate.

Newshub spoke to two major airlines on this side of the world to see how they compared.

Air New Zealand 's figures compare the pay gap between men and women in like-for-like roles rather than across the board.

The gap at Air NZ is just 0.4 percent. The airline says while it is confident the gap is due to tenure rather than bias, the figure will be monitored continuously.

Qantas told Newshub it is committed to gender equality and inclusion. In an industry that has historically been male dominated, the airline says it is removing barriers to help more women participate.

Last year Qantas CEO Alan Joyce set a goal of at least 50 percent female intake into its pilot cadet programme.