Darren – Inflight Grad Alumni

Please state your name & the current role you have in Ryanair

Darren (European Bases Manager – Inflight)

What University/College did you go to?

DIT Cathal Brugha Street

What course did you study?

International Hospitality Management

What graduate programme were you on?


What was the most rewarding part of the Ryanair Graduate Programme?

  • Getting to work with leading industry aviation professionals on a daily basis
  • Be involved in key inflight projects to enhance efficiency
  • Seeing people get promoted within and rewarded internally
  • Exploring our network on several base visits and incentives
  • Opening 2 brand new bases in our network
  • Opportunity to lead a team and discover their personal development over time

What obstacles or weaknesses did you overcome while on the Ryanair Graduate Programme?

  • Working under immense pressure
  • Handling multiple projects at once in accordance with set deadlines
  • Digesting so much information in such a short time frame
  • Learning about the operation and dealing with so much change management over the 3 years

Was there anything you got to do on the Ryanair Graduate Programme that you didn’t think you would get to do?

  • Be involved in the largest cabin crew event of the year
  • Be involved in the annual cabin crew transfer review
  • Travelling to 3 separate cities in a week
  • Meeting various stakeholders from the company with so many diverse backgrounds, cultural values and skills sets

What skills did you learn while on the Ryanair Graduate Programme that were transferable to your current role?

Interpersonal skills, the ability to meet tight deadlines, work under pressure, manage a workforce of over 900 people, HR procedures, negotiation and data analytical skills.

What from the Graduate Programme set you up for a career in Ryanair?

The opportunity to gain insights into different segments of the department i.e. the rotations. By moving from one team to another exposes you to the different ways of working and reinforces the significance of cohesiveness in a specific department.

Being given responsibility and taking ownership of tasks

Attending important meetings on key projects which were then implemented network wide

Being promoted after 7 months – opportunities are endless if you contribute your best and work extremely hard

What is your favourite memory of being on the Ryanair Graduate Programme

Getting to reward some of our best cabin crew on a regular basis and seeing them flourish over time. During my 3 years in Ryanair, I have attended several incentives including a quad biking trip in Marrakech, a VIP trip in Marbella and a hot air balloon ride across the beds of Tuscany. It is great to see the crew being rewarded for all their hard work.

Any tips or advice for anyone wishing to be successful on our Graduate Programme?

  • Take notes every day on the job so you can easily refresh your knowledge and grasp the information quickly.
  • Be curious – ask questions, generate new ideas and be innovative
  • Think big – don’t think small – lead and communicate plans that will inspire results long term
  • Set yourself objectives – ensure they are achieved and assess the positives outputs of each