Ryanair to cancel 16 flights on Tuesday in third Irish pilots’ strike

Second strike takes place on Friday; and airline has agreed to recognise German union

Ryanair said on Thursday that it had signed a union recognition agreement with Verdi in Germany. Photograph: Paul Hanna/Reuters

Ryanair said on Thursday that it had signed a union recognition agreement with Verdi in Germany. Photograph: Paul Hanna/Reuters

 

Ryanair has said it will cancel 16 flights next Tuesday as Irish-based pilots stage their third one-day strike.

The news comes as about 100 members of the Irish Airline Pilots’ Association (Ialpa) – part of trade union Fórsa – directly employed by Ryanair, hold their second one-day strike on Friday in a dispute over base transfers, promotion, leave and other issues.

A third stoppage on Tuesday looks likely to go ahead, and the airline said it would cancel 16 of a total of more than 290 flights scheduled for that day to allow passengers to choose alternatives.

Ryanair cancelled 24 flights from Ireland to Britain ahead of today’s one-day strike, but said that it reaccommodated or refunded most of the 4,000 passengers affected.

Eddie Wilson, the airline’s chief people officer, wrote to Angela Kirk, Fórsa national secretary, saying the airline would cancel 16 flights on Tuesday, if the company did not call off the third strike by 7pm on Thursday.

Ialpa-Fórsa has already said that 11 terms it submitted to the company would form the basis for it suspending industrial action. The company maintains these conditions are not appropriate for an airline of its size.

Talks between the sides ended inconclusively earlier this week.

Continental strikes

Ryanair faces further disruption on Wednesday and Thursday next week as cabin crew in Belgium, Portugal and Spain strike.

The airline will cancel 300 of 2,400 daily flights on Wednesday and Thursday. Up to 50,00 of Ryanair’s 430,000 customers, about 12 per cent, will be hit each day. The company is offering to reaccommodate or refund affected passengers.

Meanwhile Ryanair has signed a deal recognising German cabin crew union Verdi, the third such agreement the Irish airline has struck recently.

The company confirmed the agreement with Verdi on Thursday. The union will represent directly employed cabin crew working on the airline’s craft in Germany.

The deal follows similar agreements reached with Anpac/Anpav in Italy and Unite in the UK, which will represent directly employed cabin crew in those countries.

Mr Wilson said: “This is a further sign of the progress Ryanair is making with trade unions since our December 2017 decision to recognise unions, with over 60 per cent of our cabin crew now covered by recognition agreements.”