Wage strike forces Lufthansa to cancel 900 flights in Germany

Published on : Thursday, April 28, 2016

lufthansaLufthansa will cancel almost 900 flights in Germany when airport ground staffs are expected to join a strike called by the country’s biggest services union, Verdi, the carrier said.


The walkouts are being staged by Verdi members working in air safety control, ground services, at check-in counters and in engineering workshops at the airports.


The airlines said 87,000 passengers might be impacted as it was forced to cancel 60% of its flights.  Among the casualties are the international flights which will come in and out of Munich and Frankfurt.


Representing 2.14 million public sector workers, Verdi has targeted airports as part of a broader schedule of strikes this week. In a statement on its website, the union is calling for 6% wage increases.


The carrier complained that they are not involved in the dispute but are being affected the most and regretted for the inconvenience faced by the passengers as the effects of the strike.


Lufthansa has been repeatedly hit by strikes over the past year in wage disputes of its own, with both pilots and cabin staff staging a number of walkouts over pay and early retirement provisions. It has cancelled 545 flights arriving and departing from Munich, with 54,000 passengers affected. In Frankfurt, where the stoppages would last until 3:00 pm, some 350 flights and 33,000 passengers would be grounded.


The carrier advised passengers to consult the website to see if their booked flight was taking place.


On domestic flights, passengers could exchange their tickets for rail tickets. Other passengers would be able to re-book their flights free of charge.  International routes on Air Berlin, Germany’s second largest airline, have also been impacted by the strike. The carrier said transatlantic flights were to be diverted through Nuremberg. Lufthansa and Air Berlin said they would rebook cancelled flights free of charge.

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