© JOSE JORDAN / AFP
Hundreds of cockpits will remain empty this Friday, as Ryanair's pilots and cabin crews say they are fed up and are protesting for better working conditions across Europe.
The low-cost airline Ryanair has once again been struck by disruptive industrial action. Following the highly-publicised July walkouts, pilots and cabin crew are staging another one-day strike this Friday. The walkouts represent an unprecedented labour conflict that will affect countless passengers in the middle of this year's high tourist season.
The situation has worsened over the last couple of months and the airline is now facing serious consequences. Even Ryanair's somewhat infamous boss Michael O'Leary has admitted that he would have to face trade unions.
The pilots are requesting better pay. Supported by the trade unions, they claim that their pay remains well below average in comparison to other European airlines. Another issue is the pilots' contracts: instead of being permanently employed, the pilots are treated as freelance employees.
At first, pilots in Sweden, Belgium and Ireland were due to hold the planned 24-hour industrial action but pilots in Germany and the Netherlands have now joined the strikes. Hundreds of flights will be cancelled across Europe; approximately one out of ten flights will remain on the ground.
Airports like Brussels-Charleroi, Zaventem and Frankfurt-Hahn, which are all much frequented by Luxembourg residents, will probably be affected.
Luxembourg's Findel airport, however, has announced that they did not receive any information about potential strikes in the Grand Duchy. Ryanair flights will thus depart from Luxembourg as scheduled.