What are the Latest Airport/Airline Strikes in Europe?

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August is finally here, and for many Europeans (me included) this only means summer holidays. It’s peak travel season in the continent, with most airlines adding seasonal services to holiday destinations on top of their regular schedule.

August is also the favorite month of the year for European airlines/ground staff unions to strike. Let’s take a look on the latest strikes that will happen across the continent.

British Airways Mix Fleet: Aug 2 – 15

The never-ending British Airways mix fleet strike hits again Aug 2 – 15, both dates inclusive. BA was able to cover most of its schedule during the last strikes with wet leases from Qatar Airways and other operators, but potential disruption is possible (John discussed it here).

Paris – Charles de Gaulle Air France Ground Personnel: July 29 – Aug 2

Force Ouvrière, the third largest union in France, has called for a strike of Air France ground staff from today to July 2 to denounce understaffing and workplace conditions. From an article on air-journal.fr (google translate – access original in French here)

The call to the strike of FO intends to denounce an increase of the aggressions caused by the ” chronic understaffing “, ” the automation of certain Services “and wait times too long due to a” shortage of police officers at immigration checkpoints  ”. More than 70 accidents at work were reported in a single day by Air France agents at check-in or boarding, the union said. One of its representatives described in Ouest France ” a situation of chaos “

Paris – Orly Vueling Cabin Crew: July 30 – Aug 6

The 2nd Paris airport will also experience some disruption as the ORY-based Vueling cabin crew is called to strike next week. From Le Figaro (google translate – access original in French here):

The SNPNC / FO, the only trade union representative of the PNC, “denounces the working conditions and remuneration in force on the French base” of Vueling in Paris, he said in a statement.

The strike notice is addressed to the 65 hostesses and stewards under French contract who operate in Orly, a union representative told AFP.

Barcelona El Prat Airport Security Staff: Aug 1 – Onwards

Security lines at Barcelona airport have been out of control these past days due to a dispute between the staff and Eulen, the contractor in charge of staffing the metal detectors and x-ray machines. The staff has announced strikes from August 1 onwards, but covert strikes are already happening. From El Pais (access here):

The staff claim that the problems are not due to a “go-slow strike” but rather that they are following to the letter the security protocols at times of a terrorist alert, which stipulate that they can spend up to 10 minutes with each passenger.

The strike works committee for the employees announced this week that from August onward, they would be striking at four different times of day: from 5.30-6.30am, 10.30-11.30am, 4.30-5.30pm and 6.30-7.30pm.

Conclusion

If you think you are potentially affected by any of these strikes contact your airline and check the status of your flight before heading to the airport, and know your passenger rights!

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  • Xavier

    FYI, There are no passenger rights when Airport Security Staff is on strike. Also the strike is announced from August 4th.

    • In the case of Barcelona, AENA (the airport operator) is the ultimate responsible of the smooth operation of the airport (that’s why you pay them airport fees for), and in case if missing a flight due to the security staff strike, claims for compensation should be addressed to them.

      And although the first official day of strike is Aug 4, the security staff is already staging coveted strikes and wait times security lines at Barcelona airport have been hitting the 2 hours mark a couple of days ago.

      • Xavier

        Good to know but I still waiting for a sentence after seven years of the operations control strike on 2010.

  • Siwusa

    Still thinking, that taking passengers “hostage” to get more money shouldn’t be legal. They can only strike and push because of that – employees of other industries can’t do something like that. If waiters strike – well the restaurant is probably closed and you just go to another one – but with aviations its a bit different…

    • Joseph Merrick

      But never underestimate the effect on workers of other industries. Strike is important, because without it, the workers would be treated like slaves. Just take a look at countries, where striking isn’t possible.