RYANAIR’S pilots in Ireland have now confirmed a strike – just days after the airline’s UK pilots confirmed a walk out.
But there may be further travel woes for the Irish carrier’s passengers as its Spanish pilots could also be planning industrial action.
Ryanair pilots have announced more strikes[/caption]
Ryanair’s directly employed pilots in Ireland voted overwhelmingly in favour of industrial action on Friday, unless the airline agrees to union pay proposals by Monday, the Forsa/IALPA trade union said.
Members of the union staged a series of one-day strikes a year ago before Ryanair settled their concerns on transfers and promotions, but Forsa said the airline has stalled on talks since the union submitted its pay demands in late March.
Forsa said that industrial action was backed by 94 per cent of the 180 directly employed pilots eligible to vote and the union will write to management early next week to outline its plans if the pay demands are not met.
The union is required to give at least one week’s notice ahead of any strike.
The news comes just after the airline’s UK pilots confirmed a strike for August and September.
The Irish carrier’s passengers have slammed the airline for leaving them in the dark as they don’t know whether their flights will be going ahead yet.
Some travellers who were travelling for their wedding or birthday fear their big day could be ruined by the walkout.
Twitter user Stefanie Mccabe tweeted: “Why why why would @Ryanair decide to strike , especially on day fly out to a wedding.”
Mark Anderson Willis also wrote: “@Ryanair do you think you could not be such utter C£@?s an strike over the exact time we have 70 people coming to a Wedding in France.
“Wedding planning and dealing with a bridezilla can be tricky at the best of times, so it would be lovely if you could suggest what we all do now?”
Amber Rose said: “When will you advise which flights are affected by the strike action? @Ryanair @BALPApilots.
“My best friend is flying home from Australia to get married in Malaga – all guests including bride & groom (!!!) are flying out on 2nd and 3rd September. ”
Other Ryanair passengers shared their concerns.
Tara Ryan asked: “@Ryanair please tell me my brother and his family can fly home for my birthday from Stansted to shannon on the 22nd of August ?”
Gareth Carter tweeted: “@Ryanair Pilots are you kidding me. A strike on the day I take my 5 kids to Spain on their first flight ever! Not cool.”
Another user added: “please don’t let pilots strike over the summer holidays, we have never been on holiday overseas as a family and are taking our 5 year old twins and 3 year old to France on the 23rd August, you cannot let this happen.
“You are victimising families with children.
“@BALPApilots please don’t strike on 23st August, our first holiday in 6 years will be ruined, we are flying that day.
“Our 3 young children have never been abroad. We also work relentlessly all year long. Think of the innocent public please. @Ryanair you can’t let this happen.”
UK Pilots at Ryanair are to stage a series of strikes in a dispute over pay and conditions, their union has said.
Strikes will be held from 00.01am on August 22 until 11.59pm on August 23 and from 00.01am on September 2 until 11.59pm on September 4.
Members of the British Airline Pilots Association (BALPA) voted by 4-1 to back a campaign of action on a 72 per cent turnout.
The Ryanair strike is set to pile more misery onto holidaymakers, who have already seen a British Airways IT failure throw their plans into chaos.
A union statement said the strike was the result of “decades” of Ryanair refusing to deal with unions.
BALPA said the dispute revolves around pensions, loss of license insurance, maternity benefits, allowances and a fair, transparent, and consistent pay structure.
Brian Strutton, BALPA’s general secretary, said: “We have had no formal offer from Ryanair and it is imperative that we resolve this dispute urgently to avoid strike action.
“No pilot wants to spoil the public’s travel plans but at the moment it seems we have no choice.”
At the end of July Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary said 900 jobs were at risk at the airline because there was an “excess” number of pilots and cabin crew.
Ryanair said it was “disappointed” by the “ill-judged and ill-timed” announcement but said less than half of its pilots are BALPA members.
The airline said its UK pilots agreed a 20 per cent salary increase, with Senior Captains earning up to £180,000, which it said is more than competitors.
Ryanair said: “This BALPA industrial action has no mandate from Ryanair pilots, is ill-timed just 10 weeks before Brexit, and will cause unnecessary disruption to customers’ holidays and travel plans.
“We have written to BALPA asking them to return to talks, and we apologise sincerely to customers for any uncertainty that BALPA ballot may cause them.”
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Brits have faced a series of strikes across the country with London Heathrow and London Gatwick heavily affected.
Staff at Heathrow could still walk out at the end of August if the pay dispute is not solved.
Gatwick Airport called off their strike yesterday at the last minute.