Italy's consumer watchdog (Autorità Garante della Concorrenza e del Mercato - AGCM) has rejected a request from online travel agency (OTA) eDreams ODIGEO to issue an injunction against Ryanair (FR, Dublin International) over direct ticket distribution, a statement from the low-cost carrier reveals.

According to the authority, there is “no danger of serious and irreparable damage to competition”. The move comes after eDreams accused the airline of unfair competition and price fixing.

Earlier this year, Ryanair reached an agreement with several OTAs, such as loveholidays, Kiwi, TUI, On the Beach, eSky, and El Corte Inglés, under which they agreed to stop “screenscraping” the carrier's website. According to Ryanair, they also agreed to “stop overcharging consumers with inflated airfares and ancillary fees”.

“eDreams' efforts to lie to the AGCM with its false claims have failed once again. We welcome yesterday's AGCM ruling to dismiss eDreams' application for an injunction against Ryanair,” Ryanair group CEO Michael O’Leary said in a statement. “As OTA Pirates like eDreams continue to scam and overcharge Italian consumers with hidden markups and invented charges for Ryanair services, we repeat our call on the AGCM to now take urgent action to protect Italian consumers from these overcharging OTA Pirates like eDreams, Opodo and”

In a reply published by the TravelQuotidiano news site, a spokesperson for eDreams said that the decision was procedural and did not significantly change the ongoing antitrust proceedings. The representative noted: “The ongoing antitrust case has been brought forward and is supported by the vast majority of the Italian tourism industry and consumer associations. We will continue to contribute to the investigation in Italy to ensure that all Ryanair's abuses, including their smear campaign, end. This will benefit all European consumers and support an open and fair travel sector.”

The parties are awaiting the first hearing in a competition case that was brought before the Italian courts by the country's federation of travel associations (FIAVET) and general confederation of businesses (Confcommercio). This first hearing is expected to take place on February 11, 2025.