The Lufthansa pilots union has called off a two-day strike which was set to start on Wednesday after last-ditch make-or-break talks with the airline produced a “partial solution”.
Lufthansa pilots represented by the Vereinigung Cockpit (VC) union had threatened to walk out at 12:01 am on Wednesday and not return to work until 11:59 pm on Thursday. Cargo pilots weren’t due to return to work until 11:59 pm on Friday.
Lufthansa had been preparing to cancel 160 flights from its Frankfurt and Munich hubs should the strike have gone ahead. At least 260,000 passengers could have been stranded as a result of the strike.
Neither the union nor the airline immediately released details about the deal that averted the walkout.
In a statement, a spokesperson for the VC said “an extensive package of monetary and structural issues has been agreed”, and more details would be released in the coming days.
Lufthansa had previously offered a 900 Euro per month pay hike which would have been paid in two stages over 18 months. The union rejected the proposal because the deal only amounted to a 5 per cent rise for senior Captains.
The union had also made a slew of other demands that Lufthansa described as “unjustifiable”. If Lufthansa adopted the VC’s demands, the airline estimates its costs would spike by 900 million Euros over the next two years.
“We are pleased that a result could be achieved at the negotiating table and that further disadvantages for customers, employees and companies can be avoided,” commented the VC’s Marcel Gröls.
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.