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Aer Lingus industrial action – what could it mean for your flight?

Simon Calder’s Travel

At one minute past midnight on Wednesday 24 June, pilots working for Aer Lingus will begin “a strict work to rule” in their pursuit of a pay claim.

While stopping well short of a strike, the industrial action will involve pilots refusing any flexibility with their work.

The Irish Airline Pilots’ Association (Ialpa) says the action will result in its members:

  • “Not working overtime, or any other out of hours duties requested by management
  • “Only working the published rosters and not accepting or working any amendments to published rosters
  • “Not logging into the Aer Lingus portal or ‘e-crew’ [an online rostering system] outside of work hours.
  • “Not answering phone calls outside of work hours.”

Aer Lingus says the action “will inevitably result in significant disruption to our customers”.

The action is taking place as the summer peak gets under way, with millions of passengers booked to fly on the Irish airline – including from the UK via Dublin to North America.

But it does not affect Aer Lingus UK services from Manchester across the Atlantic, nor the Aer Lingus Regional operation – which is provided by a separate carrier, Emerald Airlines.

These are the key questions and answers.

What is the dispute about?

In a ballot in pursuit of better pay, pilots voted 99 per cent in favour of over industrial action on an 89 per cent turnout.

Captain Mark Tighe, president of Ialpa, says: “Our pay claim is for 24 per cent, which equates to inflation since our last pay rise in 2019.

“Aer Lingus have increased their profits by 400 per cent to €255 million last year.

“Our pay claim is entirely affordable, and Aer Lingus management need to quickly change position if they want to avoid this dispute escalating.

“We are in this position because management have failed to provide us with a meaningful offer on pay that accounts for inflation and the sacrifices made by pilots to save Aer Lingus during the pandemic.”

He asserts that Aer Lingus management insists pilots must “sell their working conditions in exchange for any increase in pay”.

Captain Tighe says: “We are absolutely not prepared to do that, especially when Aer Lingus is making enormous profits.”

What does the airline say?

Aer Lingus says it told the union that “industrial action at this time of year would cause very significant disruption and have a devastating impact…

Click Here to Read the Full Original Article at The Independent Travel…