Ad description

A paid-for search ad for, which appeared on 14 April 2023 under the search term “Ryanair” on the search engine Qwant, featured the heading “ Ryanair – Cheap Flights Book airline tickets with …”. Further text underneath stated “Ad Ryanair – Cheap Flights. We offer the best deals on flights worldwide. Book flight Today! Say goodbye to overpriced flights. Book cheap flights & save big today!”. Beneath the subheading “Cheap flights to Portugal”, text stated “Airline tickets to Portugal Lisbon from 29 GBP”. Beneath the further subheading “Cheap flights to France”, text stated “Airline tickets to France paris [sic] from 29 GBP”.


The complainant challenged whether the ad misleadingly implied that the advertiser was Ryanair.

Response SA t/a said that an important aspect of their role as an online travel agency was to ensure that consumers were adequately informed regarding the identity of the company behind any offer listed on their site. In using the Ryanair brand name, their intention had been for the ad to present relevant information about available flights. In addition, they highlighted that the ad featured the “eSky” logo, and that further text stating “esky” appeared in the ad as part of the website address to which it linked. They believed that those elements made sufficiently clear that their company was a third-party service provider, but felt that impression would be reinforced by the prominent branding that appeared on their website’s landing page. They further stated that the terms and conditions listed on their website made clear’s role as an intermediary booking platform.



The ad referenced Ryanair in its heading, and the airline’s name was repeated as the only bold text in the ad’s copy, including next to the word “Ad”. While text stating “esky” was included as part of the featured URL, it was preceded by the more recognisable “ryanair” brand name. The “eSky” name also appeared in the form of a small logo in the ad’s top-left corner. However, given its small size and similar blue and white colour scheme to the Ryanair logo, the ASA considered that it could easily be overlooked by consumers. In addition, in light of the “ryanair” search term, consumers would be served the ad while expecting the Ryanair website to feature amongst the top-listed search results. In that context we considered the overall impression created by the prominence of the references to Ryanair compared to the references to eSky meant consumers would understand the ad was for Ryanair and that it would take them to Ryanair’s official website.

We acknowledged that were entitled to promote their services as an online travel agency, and could therefore run ads under relevant search terms, including “ryanair”. Nonetheless, we considered that they were still required to ensure their ads did not misleadingly imply that they were the airline whose tickets they sold.

Because the ad misleadingly implied that it directed consumers to Ryanair’s official website, we concluded that it breached the Code.

The ad breached CAP Code (Edition 12) rules 3.1, 3.3 (Misleading advertising) and 3.41 (Imitation and denigration).


The ad must not appear again in the form complained of. We told SA t/a to ensure that their future ads made their status as a third-party travel agency clear upfront.

CAP Code (Edition 12)

3.1     3.3     3.41    

More on