Lufthansa cabin crew to strike
Lufthansa passengers face hundreds of possible flight cancellations after cabin crew representatives outlined strike plans for the next few weeks following the collapse of last-ditch pay talks.
The UFO union, which represents 18,000 Lufthansa flight attendants, today said it would give only a few hours' notice for most strikes, raising the threat of flight disruption.
UFO head Nicoley Baublies said the first strike could come as early as tomorrow and focus on selected airports.
"We could hold the strike for five or six hours at a time at selected airports," he said.
The dispute is the latest for Lufthansa as it grapples with rising costs, tough competition and economic uncertainties.
Costs of a drawn-out stoppage could quickly mount for the airline, which said in 2010 a four-day strike by pilots would cost it €25 million a day in lost revenue.
"The cost could reach millions on a day with a lot of traffic," Lufthansa board member for passengers business Peter Gerber told reporters today.
Mr Gerber said Lufthansa had offered a package equating to a pay rise of about 3.5 per cent.
"Given the difficult competitive environment we demand all staff to make their contribution," he said, pointing to the need to slow down pay rises and extend working hours.
He said Lufthansa was prepared to stop hiring temporary workers but not indefinitely as demanded by UFO.