Ryanair strike: Third day of strike with delays and cancelled flights

by Lorraine Williamson
Ryanair strike

MADRID – On the third day of Ryanair’s cabin crew strike, 42 flights to or from Spain had already been cancelled until 1.00 pm. In addition, 58 flights from Spain were delayed.  

Together with the trade union Sticpla, the cabin crew was called on to go on strike on the days 24, 25, 26, and 30 June and on 1 and 2 July. Those strikes are taking place at the Irish low-cost fighter’s ten bases in Spain;

  • Madrid
  • Malaga
  • Seville
  • Alicante
  • Valencia
  • Barcelona,
  • Girona
  • Santiago de Compostela
  • Ibiza
  • Palma de Mallorca

Saturday

Saturday was the second day that the Ryanair cabin crew went on strike. 115 flights were delayed and 12 flights at 5 airports were cancelled altogether. This is evident from data provided by the USO union. 

On Saturday, passengers at Las Palmas airport in Gran Canaria were the most affected. Moreover, 27 flights delayed and 4 cancelled. At Madrid, 22 flights were delayed and at Barcelona, there were 16 delayed flights and 2 flights cancelled altogether. 

Sunday

On Sunday, Malaga airport was hardest hit with a dozen cancelled departing and eight arriving flights. Furthermore, there were also six delayed flights. Barcelona El Prat Airport follows suit, with six departures cancelled and six arrivals cancelled, as well as eight delays. Similarly, Palma de Mallorca airport has already experienced delays in 13 flights. Meanwhile one departure and one arrival have also been cancelled. 

Ryanair carries the most passengers in the Spanish market. The biggest fear of the Irish airline’s customers who have bought tickets to and from Spain, France, Belgium, Portugal, and Italy is that their flight will be delayed or, in the worst case, totally cancelled. The government estimated in advance that this labour dispute could affect 2,649 operations. That could involve around 440,000 passengers in Spain during the six days of strike. 

Where is the strike? 

A total of 2,700 Ryanair crew members are being called on to strike where the strike has been announced;

  • Spain
  • Belgium
  • Portugal
  • France
  • Italy

The Belgian unions ACV PULS and CNE, and the Portuguese SNPVAC, have joined the Spanish unions USO and SITCPLA and have called for a strike on June 24, 25, and 26. In France, the union SNPNC called a strike on June 25 and 26, while UILTRASPORTI and FILT-CGIL of Italy did so on June 25. 

Why are Ryanair employees on strike? 

The unions denounce Ryanair’s failure to comply with the labour laws in force in each country. They have been ignoring court decisions, and seeking unions without representation to maintain “precarious working conditions”. Furthermore, they have been using coercion and fear in the management of its staff. 

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Strike EasyJet 

At the same time, the USO union has declared a nine-day strike for EasyJet cabin crew in Spain for the first, third, and last weekend of July in protest at the blockade in the negotiations over working conditions. According to the union, these must be equal to those of their colleagues from other European countries such as France or Germany. Here the base salary (excluding flying hours) is about €850 higher than that in Spain (around €950). 

Specifically, as announced by the unions on Tuesday, the work stoppages at EasyJet at the above-mentioned airports will take place on July 1, 2, 3, 15, 16, 17, 29, 30, and 31, with a duration of 24 hours. 

What is the minimum service provision during the strike? 

The Ministry of Transport, Mobility, and Urban Agenda (Mitma) have set the minimum services. In the case of domestic flights to or from the Balearic Islands and the Canary Islands, a minimum of between 73% and 82% of the flights must be operated, depending on the airport. 

Routes to destinations on the Spanish mainland and to foreign cities that are alternatively accessible with a travel time equal to or longer than five hours require a minimum of 53% to 58% of operations. 

For flights between mainland Spanish cities, whose alternative public transport means a journey with a journey time of fewer than five hours, the minimum services will be 36%. “These essential services are intended to reconcile the general interest of citizens, and in particular their mobility needs, with the right to strike of this group of workers,” said de Mitma. 

How to claim in case of flight cancellation? 

Consumer organisation OCU explains that consumers are entitled to compensation if the flight is cancelled due to a strike by the cabin crew or pilots. “Depending on the destination, distance, and duration of the delay, the compensation can be up to €600”. 

If the airline offers an alternative flight that leads to the destination with less than two hours delay, the consumer can choose whether he wants to reach his destination under the conditions offered or whether he prefers a refund of the ticket amount – within a maximum of 7 days. The consumer is also entitled to compensation for additional costs incurred for food, accommodation, and transfers. 

No compensation 

Finally, the airline “is not obliged to pay any financial compensation where it is proven that the flight cancellation was due to extraordinary circumstances which could not have been avoided even if all reasonable measures had been taken,” the statement said. from OCU. This concerns, for example, a strike at an airport or by air traffic control. That is beyond the airline’s sphere of influence. 

Also read: Gatwick cancels 4,000 planned flights this summer

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