Ryanair steward in four-letter rant at passenger

Incident comes after chief executive encouraged firm to soften its macho image

Ryanair's shaky customer service record has taken another blow, after the airline had to apologise for a steward's expletive-filled rant at a passenger over a bag of cheese and crackers.

According to The Sun, passenger Nadir Morris handed back the snack, which he had just asked for, because he thought the price - £4.20 - was too high.

He told the newspaper the steward told him angrily that the price paid for the company's cheap flights.

Upon landing in Pisa, Italy, Mr Morris asked the steward his name so he could make a complaint. The steward refused, he said, and tried to shove him out of the way.

When Morris told him he was recording the conversation, the steward said: "F**k you, f**k you, f**k you."

The steward has since quit his job, and Ryanair said: "We were disturbed by this report of such totally unacceptable behaviour.

"We sincerely and unreservedly apologise to the passenger in question."

Ryanair has a patchy reputation for customer service and angering customers with large fees for re-printing boarding passes and over-large baggage. This image was cited as contributing to the firm's two recent profit warnings in the past three months.

A recent Which? survey found that the airline was distinguished by its “rude and unpleasant” staff and an “aggressive and hostile” attitude towards customers, and ranked it at the bottom of 100 UK brands in terms of customer service.

Its famously brash chief executive, Michael O’Leary, recently told shareholders that the company needed to “eliminate things that unnecessarily piss people off” and soften its macho image.