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Published on Friday, January 16, 2015

Ryanair in Twitter spat with Aer Lingus

Ryanair and Aer Lingus have been involved in a Twitter spat, just as the low-cost carrier finds out today if it will be forced to reduce its stake in its 'rival'.

The row began after Aer Lingus pointed out that a photograph of one its aircraft had been used in an advert for Ryanair's business flights.

A tweet by Aer Lingus said: "Epic #photobomb by EI-DVM on Ryanair's website! Even they know we're Best for Business."

Ryanair was quick to reply, saying: "Even @AerLingus is talking about @Ryanair Business Plus. FYI, he's smiling cos he saved a fortune & avoided another late @AerLingus arrival."

Another Twitter user then intervened, asking if the two airlines really do hate each other.

Aer Lingus replied saying it was just 'healthy rivarly' and prompted Ryanair to agree, but Ryanair retorted: "We stopped being rivals in the 90s. We'd have to treble our fares and lose 81m customers to be your rival #EuropesNo1."

Aer Lingus replied with a simple: "Okay, nevermind."

The public row was reported by the Telegraph's financial section, which concluded that Ryanair was suffering from stress over today's UK Court of Appeal ruling.

Competition watchdogs are trying to force Ryanair to reduce its stake in Aer Lingus from 29% to less than 5%, but Michael O'Leary's airline has repeatedly appealed against any ruling.

Ryanair says it is now looking for a buyer for Aer Lingus, but two offers from British Airways parent IAG have already been turned down.

Speculation is now mounting that IAG is preparing a third offer.

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