Striking Ryanair pilots to add to woes for Christmas travellers

Grounded RyanairTwo strikes announced by Ryanair pilots are set to add to the misery of travelling between Ireland, the UK and mainland Europe. The first strike by the Dublin based budget airline’s pilots and cabin staff in Italy is scheduled for Friday.

This stoppage is only for four fours but an omen of further industrial action. Pilots’ unions in Ireland have confirmed 79 pilots will be on strike for 24 hours on the 20 December. Unions in Germany and Portugal say Ryanair pilots will also stage scheduled walkouts.

Cockpit is the German pilots’ union and a spokesperson said members working for Ryanair would be striking, but this would not be happening before Christmas. The various strikes are being staged in a move to win official recognition for the pilots’ unions, more money and better working conditions.

In Ireland, a representative for Impact explained the 20 December walkout was in support of gaining Ryanair’s pilots union representation. Impact said more strikes would be staged if this recognition was not forthcoming.

In the face of the impending stoppages, Ryanair has issued statements affirming it does not recognise unions and will handle flight rescheduling if or when it is necessary. Responding to the Italian strike, the airline said it planned to ignore it altogether and claimed staff rarely bothered to walk out.

When news of the Dublin strike was announced, Ryanair said the 79 were only a quarter of its pilots and were ones who were mostly leaving anyway and consequently didn’t give a hoot. The response to the Impact threat in Germany was similar and Ryanair reiterated the airline did not recognise unions.



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