Airlines have warned passengers to expect major disruption to services across Germany on Tuesday after airport security staff announced they would stage a walkout in an ongoing dispute over pay and conditions.
The largest airport to be hit by the strike action is Frankfurt Airport where officials have told passengers not to bother even making their way to the airport on Tuesday.
In a statement, the airport said all security checkpoints for passengers starting their journey in Frankfurt would be closed all day. Some checkpoints will remain open for transfer passengers but there could still be disruption for anyone hoping to transit through Frankfurt on Tuesday.
Other airports set to be hit by the walkout are Berlin, Bremen, Hamburg, Hanover, Stuttgart, Düsseldorf and Cologne/Bonn.
The strike has been called by the Ver.di United Serviced trade union which represents airport security officers employed by the Federal Association of Aviation Security Companies.
The union said the two sides had so far failed to reach an agreement after four rounds of negotiations. Ver.di is looking for at least a €1 per hour pay increase but the offer for junior ranks is currently only 38 cents.
Union negotiator Wolfgang Pieper also says officers working in East Germany are still paid less than their colleagues in West Germany. Pieper said the union had made “zero progress” in its demands to align pay regionally.
Security officers walked out over several days last week causing mass flight cancellations and disruption. In some cases, airlines were able to fly passengers into affected airports but then had to depart empty because passengers couldn’t get through the security checkpoints.
“The strike is expected to cause major disruptions and flight cancellations,” a spokesperson for Frankfurt Airport said on Monday. “In particular, the security checkpoints outside the transit area will remain closed throughout the day.”
Mateusz Maszczynski honed his skills as an international flight attendant at the most prominent airline in the Middle East and has been flying throughout the COVID-19 pandemic for a well-known European airline. Matt is passionate about the aviation industry and has become an expert in passenger experience and human-centric stories. Always keeping an ear close to the ground, Matt's industry insights, analysis and news coverage is frequently relied upon by some of the biggest names in journalism.