Pilots at the German flag carrier Lufthansa have announced that they will go on strike for 24 hours on Friday, 2nd September after a deal during last-ditch pay talks failed to materialise.
The walkout is set to set the airline to halt with broad support amongst pilots to take part in the industrial action. Around 98 per cent of pilots represented by the Vereinigung Cockpit (VC) union voted in favour of strike action last month following protracted negotiations.
Matthias Baier, a VC spokesperson said the union had exhausted all avenues before calling a strike. “Aware of our responsibility for the company (Lufthansa) and guests, we did not want to leave any stone unturned and offered another negotiation date,” Baier said on Wednesday evening.
“We have not received a sufficient offer today (Wednesday) either. This is sobering and a missed opportunity. The negotiations have failed.”
Last week, the union warned that the two sides were “too far apart” between what pilots were demanding and what Lufthansa was willing to offer.
The strike is set to start at one minute past midnight on September 2 and end at 11:59 pm. The effects of the strike are likely to be felt throughout Thursday and into Saturday because aircraft and pilots will be out of position.
A one-day warning strike by Lufthansa’s ground workers in July grounded at least 1,000 flights and left 134,000 passengers stranded after the airline was forced to nix almost its entire schedule from its Frankfurt and Munich hubs.
Lufthansa ilots last staged a 48-hour walkout in November 2016 which resulted in 1,700 flight cancellations. The latest walkout is set to be the 15th such strike by pilots at the German carrier since 2014.
Marcel Gröls, Chairman of Tariff Policy of VC said Lufthansa must now “present a significantly improved offer” if it is to prevent the walkout from going ahead.
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.