Jetstar Employee Strikes December 13 – 20, 2019

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Jetstar, a subsidiary of Qantas, is facing strikes from several employee groups that will delay and cancel many of its flights. The airline has already canceled roughly 100 scheduled for this weekend.

Jetstar

Employees are demanding pay raises, guaranteed hours, and safety improvements while the airline has refused them all. Employees have promised not to strike during Christmas and New Years.

Here’s travel information from Jetstar:

We have been notified by the Australian Federation of Airline Pilots that it plans to take a range of industrial actions that could disrupt travel between December 13 and December 20, 2019

Our teams are working hard to minimise the disruption to customers.

What you need to know and do if you’re travelling between 13 and 20 December

  • Make sure your contact details are up to date: If your fight is affected we will contact you directly via SMS and email as soon as we know so please make sure your contact details are up to date. The best way to do this is via Manage My Booking.
  • If your flight is cancelled or delayed by more than 3 hours we’ll look after you: You will be offered the choice of an alternate flight or a refund. For customers who have to overnight away from home as a result of this disruption we will also offer accommodation and meals to a specified value.
  • If your flight is rescheduled or cancelled you can choose a new one without calling us: Just follow the link in your email or SMS to our Recovery Portal and you can review your flight options.
  • You can cancel your travel now and receive a refund online: We understand this industrial action creates uncertainty, and so if you are travelling with us between 13 and 20 December and you want to cancel your flight and make other plans, you can request a refund directly by filling up this FORM.
  • Want to move your travel to before December 13?  You can contact us to move your flight forward to travel between now and 13 December at no additional cost.

Flights operated by Jetstar Japan, Jetstar Asia and Jetstar Pacific are not affected by this industrial action.

And their press release about the industrial action:

The Australian Federation of Air Pilots’ (AFAP) work stoppages this weekend are completely unjustifiable and cynically timed to hurt travellers at the busiest travel time of the year.

To protect the weekend plans of tens of thousands of customers, teams across Jetstar have worked around the clock to develop a proactive contingency plan.

To minimise the impact on customers by the four-hour stop work periods, we are consolidating some services, up-gauging aircraft, re-timing flights and Qantas and QantasLink will operate a number of supplementary services.

Overall, Jetstar will cancel 44 services on Saturday 14 December and 46 services on Sunday 15 December and Jetstar will contact impacted customers from today. On average Jetstar operates about 370 flights a day.

We expect to get 95 per cent of our customers on their way on the same day.

Any customers travelling from 13 December to 20 December can also request a full refund prior to flying.

We know the union’s actions are creating uncertainty for travellers, but if we accept an effective 15 per cent net increase in pay that the union is demanding, there will be significant upward pressure on the low fares our customers rely on and we will be forced to review our investment in new aircraft and new destinations.

We remain committed to reaching a new agreement to support the great work our people do every day, but not any cost. Strong arm action from the AFAP will not change our position on this.

Again, we say to the union: come to the table with a reasonable offer that is fair, and which also ensures the future of low fares travel for Australians.

Changes to Jetstar flights this weekend:

  • Jetstar has re-timed flights, up-gauged aircraft and transferred some passengers to Qantas flights to get as many customers as possible away on their journeys.
  • We expect around 80 per of our flights will operate as scheduled.
  • 44 services will be cancelled on Saturday and 46 on Sunday with customers being re-accommodated on alternative flights.
  • Customers can also request a refund direct from their text or email notification if they no longer wish to travel.
  • The impact to Jetstar’s international flights is expected to be minimal with limited delays and cancellations planned.

Conclusion

The employees are striking at various hours on Saturday and Sunday, depending on the type of the aircraft and whether captains are on their base or not.

I always remember one Qantas employee referring to Jetstar as a Deathstar as Qantas was slowly moving some of the routes to its low-cost subsidiary from the mainline.

Let’s hope that Qantas and its Jetstar employees can find a solution so that further strike activity can be averted.

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