Ryanair’s warning comes in light of the airline being forced to cancel more than 1,000 flights last month thanks to the strike by air traffic control.

Other airlines such as easyJet also suffered; they cancelled 974 flights in May.

The ATC strikes in France are scheduled for most weekends leading up to peak season, with the latest reported for this weekend.

Ryanair’s CEO Michael O’Leary has warned of the catastrophic disaster it could mean if the problem continues to plague European airspace.

Flights to France as well as any flights that travel over France will be affected.

Flights to France as well as any flights that travel over France will be affected

O’Leary told Sky News that it is leading to “hundreds of flights being cancelled,” which, in the busy summer months, could affect thousands of passengers.

He explained: “Many of these flights don’t even touch France, yet they will be disruptive because French ATC requires airlines to cancel overflights while they protect French domestic routes.

“Europe’s airlines are also suffering thousands of ATC delays/cancellations because of staff shortages especially in German and UK ATC providers.”

He is calling on the EU commission to take action against the issue to prevent the cancellation of overflights.

O’Leary is also warning that ATC providers should be fully staffed to prevent the problem from escalating.

Ryanair flights summer holiday warning

Ryanair flights: Summer holiday plans could “meltdown” thanks to ATC strikes

Fiona Macrae from consumer awareness initiative Travelinsuranceexplained.co.uk said explained what Ryanair customers should do if they experience a cancelled flight due to the ATC strikes.

She said: “The European Union (EU) states that EU airlines must provide alternative flights or a refund if a flight is delayed or cancelled, however this may not be the case with an Air Traffic Control Strike.

“This is due to it being classed as an ‘extraordinary circumstance’ and not something the airline can avoid.

“Those who bought a travel insurance policy before the strikes were announced may be able to claim for trip disruption – this will entitle them to compensation for every set block of time they are delayed up to a certain amount.”

For passengers who buy policies after the strike, they won’t be protected as it is classed as a “known event”.

Ryanair flights summer holiday warning

Ryanair flights: 1,000 flights were cancelled in May thanks to the ATC strikes

Ryanair flights summer holiday warning

Ryanair flights: CEO Michael O’Leary has warned of summer chaos

The low-cost airline has recently opened their newest UK base at London Southend airport.

In a press conference earlier this week, Ryanair’s CCO David O’Brien issued the warning that action must be taken to prevent further disruption regarding ATC strikes.

He explained: “We can do very little regarding ATC. Every carrier is going to start to be noisier on this subject. Airlines such as Lufthansa are cancelling a number of flights these days.

“All we can do is to keep bringing this subject to the attention of those making the regulations. It is truly a scandal that a couple of hundred ATC controllers can affect airports.

“The proposal is that neighbouring ATC providers should be able to provide overflight air traffic control of those countries on strike.”

The airline has experienced an increase in passengers and profits, according to latest figures.

Passenger numbers hit 12.5 million last month, with a plane capacity of 96 per cent. Profits also increase to £1.3 billion despite issues last year of flight cancellations.

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